Friday, 8 November 2013

Earl grey sandwich cookies and a review



Before I became the seasoned coffee addict that I am today I used to be a tea drinker. The coffee habit was born partly out of living with a coffee lover and partly out of pure self preservation - once you have kids you must survive on very little sleep for a good few years.

I still love a good cuppa and will switch to tea once the 3 cups of coffee have woken me up. Needless to say, I was very happy to receive a Jing Teabag Explorer for review. This bag contains the entire range of Jing whole leaf tea bags - Earl Grey, Assam Breakfast, Darjeeling 2nd Flush, Jasmine Silver Needle, Peppermint, Organic Jade Sword, Chamomile and Lemongrass and Ginger.


Jing White Peony white tea blended with tiny whole rosebuds.
This is the peppermint teabag - the mintiest one I have ever tasted!

Within a week I had finished the entire selection. Hard to say which was my favourite as they have a tea to match every mood and time of day, but it is a wonderful introduction to their range and I would highly recommend this for any tea lover. 

Since trying the teabags, I have gone on to buy the beautifully delicate white peony white tea (scented with tiny rosebuds - very pretty) as well as the wonderfully robust Assam Breakfast tea. There's a lot more loose leaf teas to explore on the Jing website - their tea range is only available for sale online.


The teapot comes with a tea strainer. 

Each teapot is branded with IWACHU trademark
Great tea requires a teapot up to the task and I was very lucky to receive a Japanese Hikifune cast iron teapot to try out. The teapot is made by the Iwachu firm in Japan who have been making teapots for over a 100 years. It's simple in design, heavy, and feels like the kind of heirloom item you can pass down the generations (provided you take a little care). What's more, it brews an absolutely perfect cup of tea and keeps it warm for absolute ages. 

And if you are really serious about your tea you may want to invest in a temperature control kettle - as teas brew at different temperatures. There's a few on the market now and I may just add one to my Christmas wish list!

A cup of tea is not complete without a little treat on the side - at least not in my world. These sugar cookies are delicately scented with Earl Grey tea but you can use other types of tea as well. The silky filling is a variation on the ermine frosting I used on the Red Velvet cupcakes. The cookies taste better once they have a chance to mellow a bit - the filling will soften them up slightly after a day or so and their flavour will intensify. Enjoy with a cup of tea!

Disclaimer: I received a Teabag Explorer from Jing and a cast iron teapot from Iron Kitchen for review. 




For the sugar cookies

250g | 2 cups plain flour
200g | 1 cup caster sugar
115g | 1 stick unsalted butter, cubed
1 egg
1 tbsp Earl Grey tea ground to a powder
Zest of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp baking powder
Pinch salt

For the filling
3 tbsp plain flour
120 ml | 1/2 cup very strongly brewed Earl Grey tea
115g | 1 stick butter
100g | 1/2 cup caster sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
1 tbsp Jing Earl Grey tea ground to a powder
Couple drops lemon extract

To make the cookies, preheat the oven to 180C | 350F. Cream the butter the sugar using the paddle attachment on a stand mixer for 5 minutes till light and fluffy. 

Add the egg, tea powder, zest and beat well. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt then add to the batter beating until a dough forms.

Turn the dough out on your work surface and pat into a ball. Divide in two and flatten into disks. Wrap in cling film and chill for an hour.

Take the cookie dough out and roll out to about 1/2cm | 1/4 in thick. Stamp out shapes using cookie cutters and transfer cookies onto a heavy baking sheet lined with paper.

Bake for 10-15 minutes depending on size (and your oven).Take the cookies out of the oven when the edges start to colour. Cool completely on a drying rack - they will harden when dry.

To make the filling, first brew an extra strong pot of Earl Grey tea using 2 tbsp of loose leaf tea or 2-3 teabags. 

Put the flour in a small saucepan and add the tea. Whisk together over medium heat until you have a thick roux. Cool completely.

Cream the butter the sugar using the paddle attachment on a stand mixer for at least 5 minutes till light and fluffy. Add the zest, tea and lemon extract and beat some more. Add the cooled roux and beat until the filling is silky smooth and holds firm peaks.

Fill the cookies using a piping bag or just smooth some filling on with a knife. Sandwich together and store in a cake tin. 



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7 comments:

  1. lovely idea, I like Earl grey tea in desserts with it's delicate scent. The teapot is lovely but what I am really craving is that gorgeous teacup!

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    1. The teacup is vintage - my lovely college flatmate donated a few family things to the blog!

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  2. The peony tea looks so delicate and dainty with the rosebuds scattered through it and the Earl grey cookies are so pretty. A beautiful post :)

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  3. Oooh lovely :) I am an absolute tea addict <3 Your cookies really do look super delicious :)
    hugs, rebecca

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  4. These look so gorgeous! Lovely photography and I love anything with rose or tea in it.

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