May 4, 2015

jasmine tea cookies

I have a springtimey, Mother's Day-y, sweet treat I want to share today, and here's a funny little story I want to tell you. The pretty I've tried to cram into these photos is for you. I made these charming little tea cookies, and set them out alongside a teacup that used to be my mother's - (until I begged her for them). I picked a few things that are managing to grow in my wreck of a garden. And I took photos, deleted half of them, took some more, wondered if the cookies were any good, deleted more pictures, than noticed that the light had changed, took more photos.....around that time, Andrew wandered in and said, Are you still taking pictures of those cookies???

 It's my way of saying, I didn't get to sit down and actually enjoy the little scene you see before you. But I'm hoping, and I really do believe, that if it's possible, it would be nice for you mamas, or anyone who's stressed, (there are a lot of commas happening in this sentence) should take a moment to have a cup of tea and a cookie once in awhile. And read a book or something or just revel in a moment of calm. I didn't do that with this cup of tea or this batch of cookies, but I will with the next batch.

I recently read a story about a mama with four kiddos who was sick, but didn't take a break, and then got so sick that she wound up in the hospital. She didn't think it was ok for her to ever take a break, really. So her body decided for her. I hope sometimes that reading my blog gives people a few moments of break time. Sometimes it's hard to carve out anything more than a few moments here and there, but if you find the time and feel like baking or making, these jasmine tea cookies are really quite nice.

And if you feel like giving someone, or YOURSELF, a little present that won't break the bank, these mini recipe boxes from Studio Oh! are just the prettiest, cutest and the sweetest. Gorgeous recipe cards inside a pretty little box. I wrote about the tea box a couple years ago. They have a pocket pie recipe box now! Pocket pies! Oh how I want it! Also the french cookie box. And the cupcake box.

These jasmine tea cookies were a big success. Reviewer #1 (Julia) said: "These are best cookies I've ever had." Reviewer #2 (Andrew) thought they were "really good." (And he said this in a surprised tone.)

I'm lukewarm about any cookie that doesn't have chocolate in them, but here's the thing about these. They aren't too sweet, and they're shortbready and very very faintly flavored with jasmine tea leaves, and are really lovely to have with tea. And they taste even better on the second day! I was worried that they weren't going to be sweet enough with only a half cup of sugar, so I dusted them with sugar when they came out of the oven. You can decide how you want to proceed with that.



2/3 cup softened butter (10 and 1/2 tablespoons, yes that's a lot of butter)
1/2 cup superfine sugar
1 beaten egg
2 and 1/2 cups flour
1 tablespoon jasmine tea leaves, chopped (I emptied out two jasmine tea bags)


Cream together butter and sugar in a medium sized bowl until light and fluffy. Mix in the egg, then flour. Add tea leaves. Form dough into a ball, and flatten to a 1 inch high disc. Wrap disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 1 hour or until firm. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Roll dough into walnut sized balls, and place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Flatten slightly with the bottom of a glass. Bake cookies for 15-20 minutes until edges become golden. Remove cookies from baking sheets and cool on wire racks. (roll in sugar for extra sparkle and sweetness, if you like that sort of thing, which I do)

Makes 24-30 cookies. You can freeze or refrigerate extra dough if you don't want to make that many cookies at once.

We're very excited to play with the base recipe, and add chopped lavender, or rose water, or something else delicate and herbal to the plain cookie base. Happy Mother's Day a bit early. Everyone deserves a break. Especially mamas!


  1. They're lovely and they sound delicious and pretty easy. Very cool. Thanks for sharing it sugar.

    1. it was a super easy recipe! i was surprised :)

  2. Replies
    1. i also should have written 'biscuity' - because they aren't like true shortbread cookies - more like a biscuity, cookie-ish, shortbready hybrid. Maybe that's what tea cookies are like!

  3. Really nice. I love all the photos and I adore cookies that have tea in them. I have a recipe for earl grey shortbread somewhere. I'll make that soon and send to you. xoxoxox


    1. earl grey shortbread sounds AMAZING. do you use rice flour in your shortbread? i've always heard that the best crispy shortbread is made with rice flour, but I've never tried! I think the scottish stuff I buy at Cost Plus World Market is made with just regular flour, but those cookies are awesome. Walkers brand in the red boxes! They have petticoat tails, scottish dog shape, traditional bars etc - those are my go-to Christmas gifts to Andrew and my dad. :)

  4. I'd just like to say that your post is just what I needed. I have kids who have been getting sick one by one for the past week (just as one gets well the next goes down), I was sick myself, and I also need to get ready to leave for our vacation on Thursday while finishing up our homeschool year - it all makes for a bit of stress. I don't have tea or cookies in the house, but just gazing at that first photo makes me feel more relaxed. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Oh I'm so glad, Dana! Sorry about all the sickies though. This time of year is just a bundle of stress!

  5. Thank you for sharing this recipe, and the lovely photos. The cookies look delicious!! What is the name of the little purple flowers? They are darling! And Happy Mother's Day to you, too!!!

    1. Thank YOU Julia!! aaaagh I don't know the name of the flowers, I used to but I forgot. It's a little creeping bush that grows over our retaining wall - most of the time it looks pretty haggard but in the spring it puts forth a few short-lived purple flowers :)