Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Orange and thyme sablés and my love for herbs

Sablés de laranja e tomilho


One of the things I liked the most when I started cooking recipes from different new sources – books, magazines, foodblogs – was learning how to use fresh herbs: until then, I was used to parsley and chives, which are highly popular in Brazilian houses, but not much more than that. 

The first time I added basil to a tomato sauce it was a revelation: it was amazing how much more delicious it tasted! After basil, I became friends with rosemary, sage, mint, marjoram (which I love, even though is not super easy to find), oregano, cilantro, and my absolute favorite: thyme.

I sometimes hear people saying that it goes well with beef, or lamb, but I have used thyme in so many recipes, combined with so many different types of produce and ingredients, and it has worked wonderfully every time. I love it with roasted vegetables, tomato sauce, dishes with cheese and cream, chicken, fish, chickpeas… Really, the sky is the limit for me.

One of my favorite recipes with thyme is actually sweet: these melt-in-your-mouth sables are delicious and might turn you into a thyme-fan, if you are not one yet.


Orange and thyme sablés

own recipe


½ teaspoons fresh thyme leaves

finely grated zest of 2 large oranges

¾ cup (150g) granulated sugar

1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, room temp.

1 large egg, room temp.

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

2 teaspoons Cointreau (optional)

2 ¾ cups (385g) all purpose flour

½ teaspoon table salt


To roll the dough log:

2 tablespoons granulated sugar – demerara works wonders here too


Place the thyme, orange zest and sugar in a mortar and pestle or a mini food processor and crush/grind until sugar is fragrant. Transfer mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer, add butter and cream until light and fluffy – scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally throughout the making of the recipe. Beat in the egg, beating well after the addition. Beat in the vanilla and the Cointreau (if using). In low speed, beat in the flour and salt and mix just until a dough forms – do not overmix.

Divide the dough into two equal parts. Place each on a large piece of parchment paper; shape dough into logs. Fold parchment over dough; using a ruler, roll and press into a 3.5 cm (1.4in) log – like Martha does here. Wrap in parchment. Chill in the fridge until very firm, about 3 hours (the dough logs can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 days or stored in the freezer for up to 1 month.)

Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F; line two large baking sheets with baking paper.

Unwrap one log at a time (keep the other in the fridge) and roll it through the sugar, pressing ever so slightly to help adhere. Cut log into 5mm (about ¼in) thick rounds; space 5cm (2in) apart onto prepared sheets. Bake until golden brown around the edges, 12-15 minutes. Cool on the sheets for 5 minutes, then slide the paper with the cookies onto a wire rack and cool completely. Repeat the process with the remaining dough log.

Packed airtight, the cookies will keep for about 5 days at room temperature or in the freezer for a month.

Makes about 48 cookies

1 comment:

aussiebaker said...

These sables look and sound delicious!

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