Thai Tea Shortbread Cookies


thai tea cookies
You need unflavored Thai tea, instead of the kind that comes mixed with sugar and powdered cream, to make these tender, buttery sablés. You need to be mindful of the fact that most Thai tea brands include artificial colorings in their product (to give you the signature orange color) and not wear a white top when making these. You need good butter. You need to allow the dough to chill. That’s it. The rest is easy.

If you have a favorite go-to shortbread recipe, by all means, use it. It’s best if that recipe calls for white sugar instead of brown sugar as the color of the brown sugar will kind of mar the orange color of the tea. Oh, and add about a tablespoon of water to the butter when you cream it. This will help the tea to release its signature color and fragrance better.

If you don’t have a go-to recipe, you can use this one.

thai tea cookies
Thai Tea Shortbread Cookies
(Makes 3 dozen 2-inch rounds)
Printable Version

3/4 cup (6 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons loose Thai tea
1 tablespoon water
1/2 cup white granulated sugar
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch (British = corn flour)

  • Cream the butter with sugar, tea, and water until homogeneous.
  • Gently beat in the flours just until combined.
  • Place the dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap spread out on the counter top. With the help of the plastic wrap, form the dough into a log, two inches in diameter.
  • Twist the end of the plastic wrap to seal the two ends of the log. Chill the dough for about an hour.
  • Preheated the oven to 350° F. Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone sheets.
  • Slice the chilled dough with a large knife (Chinese cleaver is best!) into approximately 1/4-inch rounds. You should end up with about 36 rounds.
  • Arrange the cookies rounds on the prepared cookie sheets, allowing enough room between the cookies.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes, rotating the sheets once at 10-minute mark.
  • Let the cookies cool completely right on the cookie sheets.
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