Edible Flower Shortbread Cookies, a summer delight

Baking your way to Midsummer magic with The Farmer’s Daughter

flower cookies

These Edible Flower Shortbread Cookies are the dreamiest. Every step of their creation is whimsical and oh so beautiful.

Lori Ann Reinhall
Editor-in-chief
The Norwegian American

The Famer's DaughterWith a Midsummer salad so aesthetic and so delicious, it seemed like a bit of a challenge to find a dessert to top off the celebration.

Fortunately, I happened to come across a food blog “The Farmer’s Daughter” (the-farmersdaughter.com) that is nothing less than a treasure chest of baking recipes. Among them, I found Kelsey Siemens’ Edible Flower Shortbread Cookies, something of a Midsummer Night’s dream for any baker.

I set to work and baked up a batch, and  yes, my dream came true. These cookies are not only relatively easy to make, but as they come together with their beautiful flowers, they magically conjure up a feeling of creativity and joy.

Edible  Flower Shortbread Cookies go wonderfully with a cup of coffee or a glass of fresh lemonade on a summer’s day. 

 As editor of the newspaper, I reached out to Kelsey to get permission to reprint her recipe, which she so graciously agreed to. I also ordered her cookbook, The Farmer’s Daughter Bakes, and highly recommend it.

Happy baking and happy Midsummer!

 

Flower cookies

EDIBLE FLOWER SHORTBREAD COOKIES

INGREDIENTS

¼ cup granulated sugar

¼ cup packed brown sugar

1 cup salted butter, room temperature

2 cups all-purpose flour

½ tsp. rosewater (or use 1 tsp. vanilla extract if preferred)

Coarse or granulated sugar

Small edible flowers and herbs (violas, mini dianthus, cherry blossoms, violets, lilacs, mint, chamomile, thyme, pansy, rose petals, calendula, etc,)

Note: When sourcing edible flowers always make sure you 100% confirm the type of flower you’re using! You may find edible flowers at your local florist, some grocery stores (Whole Foods often has an edible flower blend), or online.

You may also want to grow your own, and have edible flowers all season long! Some flowers will add a flavor to the cookies (for example, dianthus tastes like mild cloves, and herbs will bring a strong flavor), while others mostly add beauty.

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat, and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the granulated sugar, brown sugar, butter and rosewater (or vanilla extract if using). Mix on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add in the flour and mix on medium speed until completely incorporated, and the dough begins forming a ball. It may still look a bit crumbly here, and that’s fine!
  4. Remove the dough from the bowl, and use your hands to form into a round disc about 2 inches thick. Dust the work surface and the dough lightly with flour, and use a rolling pin to roll out to about ¼ inch thick.
  5. Use a 2.5-inch round cookie cutter to cut out cookies, or simply use a knife to cut into squares. (Note: If the dough is too sticky to roll out, the butter may have gotten a bit too warm, simply chill for 15 minutes in the fridge and try again. Resist the urge to add too much more flour.)
  6. Transfer the cookies to the lined baking sheet, gather the scraps of cookie dough that were left over, and re-roll to cut out more cookies. Sprinkle the tops of cookies with a bit of coarse or granulated sugar for a little extra something, if desired. Gently press edible flowers into each cookie. It’s best if the petals stick to the cookie, as they’ll be less likely to go brown in the oven. You can use a tiny bit of water brushed on the cookie to help them stick. (Alternatively, you may press the flowers into the baked cookies immediately after removing from the oven for a fresher, brighter look!)
  7. Bake at 325° for 15-17 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned.  Allow to cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack. Serve immediately, or store in an airtight container.

Shortbread will last about a week at room temperature, but I recommend freezing it right away to keep it at its freshest. It will last about 3 months in the freezer. Simply thaw and serve.

 

Kelsey SiemensABOUT KELSEY

Kelsey Siemens grew up on a beautiful farm in the idyllic Fraser Valley in British Columbia,  Canada, and works there alongside her parents. She writes; “I  come from a long line of bakers and farmers and think that there is nothing as satisfying as harvesting your own produce.  It’s been hugely influential in my life and  how I view food, and I love using fresh, local produce when I can.  From kneading bread, to braiding pie dough, baking is therapy for me…and has given my scientific brain an outlet for creativity. Baking is a science, after all.”

 

All photos by Kelsey Siemens

 

This article originally appeared in the June 2024 issue of The Norwegian American.

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The Norwegian American

The Norwegian American is North America's oldest and only Norwegian newspaper, published since May 17, 1889.