Meyer Lemon and Lavender Shortbread

Meyer-Lemon-and-Lavender-ShortbreadMeyer lemon and lavender shortbread is a delightful combination of California flavors mixed into a simple, eggless cookie dough.

I love Chicago like a human being. I think it’s the greatest city in the world. It has art, culture, music, grit, and the people are unparalleled.   While New York City is narcissistically cool and San Francisco is dismissively beautiful, Chicago is the city that would give you a hug if it could. That said, I am so glad that I am not there to experience Polar Vortex 2.0.

I was there for the one in 2014. ↓↓↓↓↓

Polar-Vortex
Screenshot of my phone on January 6, 2014.

That was the winter that didn’t end for something like seven months. It was traumatizing and it looks like this winter will be similar in depth and breadth. But I am now in California and this is as bad as the weather gets in January — just some rough waves pounding the coast. #Californiaproblems.

Waves crashing on Pebble Beach January 19, 2019

And here I get to make confections that taste like sunshine using fruit from California’s loam — apparently, I’m doing a series on Meyer lemon recipes. I should mix it up, but it’s Meyer lemon season so I have to get them in while I can. 

In my previous post on Meyer lemon soup, I extolled the cheer of rosemary which can be found on any and every corner up and down the California coast. It never ceases to surprise me when I get a light whiff of pine on my morning runs. It brings me so much joy.

Rosemary
Vast amounts of rosemary outside a tiny church in Monterey, California

Lavender is just as prolific and extraordinary as rosemary in coastal California. While May, June and July are the high season in California for English lavender, most types can be found all over and they bloom at different times of year. Basically, I have a never-ending supply of lavender for whatever I might need it for. Most of the time, I use it to help me sleep. Today, I need it for Meyer lemon shortbread.

Lavender
Over-abundance of lavender at Lafayette Park, San Francisco

This recipe uses a basic shortbread which is lightly flavored with Meyer lemon zest (shavings of the lemon peel) and the leaves of dried lavender. The sweet leaves complement the sour lemon zest and lemon juice. Together, they make a very light and herbal cookie. 

Recipe Notes:

Regular Lemons: You absolutely can use regular lemons with this. Since Meyer lemons are, in general, less tart and more sweet than regular lemons, the result would have a stronger citrus flavor. But IMHO, nothing can be too lemony 🙂
Regular Shortbread: You can leave out the lemon and the lavender if you want for regular shortbread (but then it won’t taste like California!)
Crunchy: I leave my shortbread in the oven a big longer because I like crunchy shortbread but if you like it softer, you can cut the cook time by five to ten minutes.
Vegan: You can make this vegan by swapping out the butter for shortening (or maybe even coconut oil! Must try that as a new lemon recipe).
Lemon Bars: If I get to making Meyer lemon curd, this shortbread would make an excellent lemon bar.

Meyer Lemon and Lavender Shortbread

Ingredients:Meyer-Lemon-and-Lavender-Shortbread

  • ¾ cup butter (softened)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 TB Meyer lemon zest
  • 3 TB Meyer lemon juice
  • 1 tsp dried lavender
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 300℉.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter, sugar and salt on medium speed until the mixture is moderately fluffy.
  3. Add the zest, juice and lavender and continue mixing until it’s fluffy.

    Meyer-Lemon-and-Lavender-Shortbread

  4. Add half the flour and continue mixing until it’s incorporated before adding the other half. Continue mixing until it forms a smooth dough.
  5. Place dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll the dough to no less than 1/2-inch thickness. And refrigerate for one hour.Meyer-Lemon-and-Lavender-Shortbread
  6. Cut out cookies and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silpat.Meyer-Lemon-and-Lavender-Shortbread
  7. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes and there is very slight browning around the bottom, but the cookies should not have a lot of color, otherwise, they’re overcooked. 

Meyer Lemon and Lavender Shortbread

Meyer-Lemon-and-Lavender-Shortbread

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup butter (softened)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 TB Meyer lemon zest
  • 1 tsp dried lavender
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  1. Preheat the oven to 300
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attach, cream together the butter, sugar and salt on medium speed until the mixture is moderately fluffy.
  3. Add the zest and lavender and continue mixing.
  4. Add half the flour and continue mixing until it’s incorporated before adding the other half. Continue mixing until it forms a smooth dough.
  5. Place dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll the dough to no less than 1/2-inch thickness. And refrigerate for one hour.
  6. Cut out cookies and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silpat.
  7. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes and there is very slight browning around the bottom, but the cookies should not have a lot of color, otherwise, they’re overcooked.

Meyer-Lemon-and-Lavender-Shortbread

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