I knew that I needed to bring a knockout recipe to the food blogger cookie exchange that I attended last week, so I turned to these citrusy butter cookies. With a delicate crumb, a texture similar to soft shortbread, and a creme brulée-like smattering of burnt sugar that lightly shatters when you bite into it, Bruléed Orange Butter Cookies are a welcome contrast to the denser oatmeal and peanut butter cookies that are so prevalent this time of year. Although these cookies are a festive treat for the holidays, they make a delightful accompaniment to a cappuccino any time of the year.

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While the burnt sugar topping is what takes these cookies to the next level, I understand that a kitchen torch isn’t exactly something that everyone has on hand. My first recommendation is to use this recipe as an excuse to get one – they can be found for under $20 and are also great for toasting the cheese on French onion soup. Alternately, you can brown the sugar under the broiler for 45 seconds; however, taking this approach will also melt the glaze and the cookies won’t look quite as pretty. Of course, they are incredible without the crunchy topping – just be sure to let the glaze fully harden (about 2 hours) before stacking them.


Bruléed Orange Butter Cookies
Yields 3 dozen

For the Cookies:

For the Icing:

2-1/3 cups flour

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. orange extract

1/4 tsp. baking powder

1 Tbs. heavy cream

8 oz. unsalted butter softened

1 Tbs. water

1 cup granulated sugar

1/2 tsp. orange zest

2 Tbs. orange zest

1 pinch salt

3 large egg yolks

1/8 cup turbinado sugar

1 tsp. vanilla extract







To make the cookies: In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a second bowl, beat the butter, granulated sugar, and zest on medium speed until well blended. Add the egg yolks and vanilla. Mix until blended. Add the flour and mix on until moist clumps form. Wrap in plastic and chill 40 minutes. Roll between two sheets of parchment to ¼-inch thick. Cut with 2-inch cutters. Bake at 350 for 13 minutes or until the edges begin to brown. Allow to cool completely.

To make the icing: Combine remaining ingredients (except turbinado sugar) to form a thin glaze. Spread each cookie with 1/4 teaspoon of the glaze, then sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Pass a kitchen torch over to melt the sugar.

Approx. 110 calories, 6 grams fat, 13 grams carbs, 0 grams fiber, 1 gram protein per cookie


I’m linking this post to Wanderfood Wednesday.