For me, springtime is easily the best time of the year. The sun rises earlier and stays longer. Flowers are starting to bloom and being met by honeybees, and fresh floral smells easily find their way into your home.
Spring always gets me in the mood to start baking more. On a recent March morning, as I was drinking my cup of Earl Grey tea, I was struck with a delicious idea. I visited my local supermarket, picked up culinary-grade lavender and decided to make Earl Grey and Lavender Sugar cookies!
The recipe I used suggested pouring tea leaves directly into the batter. I followed those instructions, but was not satisfied. The cookies felt gritty and did not provide that beautiful aroma of tea and lavender I craved — I wanted the tea flavor to pop!
For my second batch, I poured my butter into a pot on the stove, set 3 tea bags in the butter, turned the heat on low, and steeped my tea in butter for about 10 minutes. That small change led to stunning results! Want to make your own? Here’s what you’ll need:
½-1 tsp culinary-grade lavender, finely ground
3-4 Earl Grey tea bags
1 cup unsalted butter
1-¼ cup granulated sugar
2-¼ cups flour
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 large egg
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 325 F. Place unsalted butter in a small saucepan and turn on low heat until melted. Add tea bags and stir 1-2 times every minute for 10 minutes. You don't want to burn your butter, but it must be hot enough to steep the tea. The butter turns to a medium to dark brown color once the tea is infused. Remove all from heat and let cool to room temperature.
- Once cooled, combine butter with sugar in a mixing bowl. Creaming it with the sugar will be slightly different than usual, but trust the process.
- Turn your mixer on low and add egg, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Lastly, add half of your ground lavender to the batter (saving the other half for garnish). Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl to get an even mixture.
- Slowly add flour until well mixed.
- Using a spoon, scoop out twelve 1-inch balls of dough evenly onto your cookie sheet. Sprinkle the top of the dough with a little bit of sugar and bake in the oven for 9-11 minutes, until the edges are lightly browning. They will look underdone but will continue cooking as they cool.
- Remove from the oven, garnish with sprinkles of lavender, and allow to cool. They are ready to serve!
These cookies are a fantastic addition to a beautiful spring morning — or any morning, really. Don’t be surprised if the aroma filling your house causes everybody to ask when they can see you on The Great British Baking Show!