While grabbing lunch in DC this past spring I sampled some Rosemary Shortbread the restaurant served as a pre-appetizer before the main meal.

I’ve been dreaming about it ever since and thought it would be perfect this time of year. I absolutely love rosemary and it lends a wonderfully savory and aromatic flavor to this shortbread. I found this particular recipe on the NY Times website and baked up a perfect batch this morning.

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Shortbread is great when short on time as it doesn’t require any real prep (letting butter come to room temperature, for example) and it’s not super sweet which I appreciate. Plus, the recipe could not be easier!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon plus 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted cold butter, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons rosemary, chestnut or other dark, full-flavored honey (optional)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Pulse flour, sugar, rosemary and salt in a food processor. Add butter and honey (I just used regular honey as I didn’t have anything special on hand). Pulse a few times more until crumbs start together being careful not to overprocess. I actually dumped everything out of my food processor into a bowl towards the end and finished combining everything by hand. You don’t want the dough to be smooth, crumbly is perfect.

Press dough into an ungreased 8-inch square baking pan. The recipe says to prick the dough all over with a fork but I neglected to do that and it turned out just fine. Bake until golden brown, 45-50 minutes for 8-inch pan. Place on a wire rack to cool and cut into squares, bars or wedges while still warm.

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Let bars cool completely after cutting in the actual pan or they will crumble as they need a little time to firm up. These bars are delicious! I think I may dip one half in melted chocolate with the next batch I make. Sliced into long rectangles, these are already being eaten as I type. Enjoy and happy holidays!

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