I’m feeling green…

Amaigreentea3_2

I first encountered Kelli’s Amai Tea and Bake House via Keiko’s blog Nordljus who was offering a set of Amai goodies for Chez Pim’s Menu for Hope raffle. Well, I did not win that prize but I just had to have a sampling of these tea sweets because they looked so adorable especially in their cute packaging. What came was an assortment of green tea, Earl Grey and currants, lemon grass, and almond cookies. It was in the middle of winter, so perfect to serve with a cup of hot tea and even warm milk. Kelli’s creations are made only from the finest all- natural ingredients and you can really see the quality with each cookie. Among these sweets, my favorites were green tea and Earl Grey with currants. I placed a second order of just these two flavors — alas, they never did last too long in my household.

Fast forward 7 months later.

Last week, I decided to check out some new food blogs and I happened upon Fanny’s blog, Food Beam where she mentioned that Kelli had posted the recipe for the Green Tea shortbread cookies on her website. Could it be? I quickly clicked on the link to Kelli’s blog Lovescool. And there it was, the recipe spelled out in front of my screen. I wasted no time at all in cutting and pasting the ingredients and instructions into a Word document, fearing that they might suddenly disappear.

And fate, it seems was taunting me further to bake this sweet jewels as Mae of Rice and Noodles also made them earlier this week.

Amai ‘s Green Tea sweets

Cooking Notes:

            Though not specifically mentioned in the instructions, since I was beating the butter till it was well blended with the powdered sugar, I presumed the butter had to be at room temperature. I made two batches. I ended up with extremely crumbly dough for the first batch. I added cold egg yolks, one at a time in this one. When I rolled out the mixture it was crumbling apart and I had to do a lot of patch-up work. Mae did mention on her blog that it was a difficult dough to work with.

            I immediately did a second batch with a little different approach. The butter was still at room temperature, but this time I had beat it longer. I also added a pinch of salt to the flour to bring out more flavor. This time my egg yolks were almost at room temperature and I added them all at once. I also stopped the beating to scrape down the sides with a wooden spoon to make sure the flour was well incorporated. Then I proceeded to beat it until it formed a mass (like the recipe stated) so that the sides of the bowl were virtually clean.

            The difference in the resulting dough was apparent. It was clay-like and not crumbly at all.

            After the 30-minute refrigeration time, I rolled it out. It tended to break apart at the edges so I would just pinch them back together. It felt almost like play dough.      

             I used a round cutter for the second batch and it did not seem to fall apart like the first one when I used a leaf-shaped cutter. I know — I changed too many variables in this experiment to really tell what went wrong with the first batch.

            Taste-wise, the two batches were the same. But the looks of the second group of tea sweets looked better texturally and was easier to work with.

My thanks to Kelli for being so generous with this recipe! Now I can enjoy my green tea cookies anytime my heart desires. Now about those Earl Grey and currant ones…

14 thoughts on “I’m feeling green…

  1. Thanks for the details! I have seen Kelli's Matcha cookies everywhere I browsed and told myself that I must make it! But I couldn't find any matcha powder at the place I stay! May I ask where did you buy your matcha powder?

  2. Oh, you've done it!!! I love how you've used a round cutter. They look really neat. I'll get a small round cutter for next time. 🙂

    Oh, and i love your milk bottle too! I think, there's a phenomena of green tea cookies…

  3. Okay, I've seen all of these posts on green tea cookies, and I have yet to try them. Time to get baking — they look wonderful.

  4. Hi Veronica — Thank you so much for documenting your experience with the cookies. I find it fascinating how different everyones kitchen can be. Beating the butter longer and starting with the butter and eggs at room temperature are definitely good ideas. When I make the dough it is very moist and doesn't fall apart, so I'm curious about how yours was cracking on the edges. Maybe it was too cold to roll out? At the Amai kitchen we use really big, strong mixers so it whips the butter into shape quickly. I suppose we're lucky with that 🙂 I have actually made this using a food processor with cold butter and it turns out well too. It's a pretty versatile dough that way. The only problem I've ever had with these comes in the summertime. If you leave the sugar coated cookies out in a warm/humid room before baking the crust may crackle. Looks like you had no trouble with this. The cookies came out beautifully and held their shape well. Nice picture too! Hope to see you at the store some day. Thanks! ~Kelli (Amai/Lovescool)

  5. Hi Patricia – if you like having tea, these tea cookies are just made for them!
    Hi Mae – I think there is a phenomenon too. But this is good, because I just love these cookies.
    Thanks Lydia – green tea cookies have a unique flavor and as they are made with tea it's perfect for that .
    Hi T.W. – yeh…dissecting a recipe is my weakness…although I have not gotten the science and patience of it down yet.
    Hi Kelli – thanks for all the tips and pointers! I did wonder if I could use a food processor for this with cold butter. Also I think my dough was too cold which was why it was breaking at the edges. I'll be trying your suggestions soon!

  6. I have been seeing these gorgeous cookies around, at Mae's and Fanny's too, and I am so wanting to try them out! First I am going to have to hunt down matcha, which will be a bit difficult here, but my husband is going to HK and I hope he finds some there…

    Your cookies look fantastic 🙂

  7. I really liked these cookies when I bought them – looks like it's time to me to make my own batch, they are making the rounds of the food blogs!!

  8. They look so tempting, especially paired with that lovely glass of milk. So yummy! My obession with green tea started when I had my first taste of green tea ice cream in a Japanes restaurant (in Madrid, of all places!). Since then I've loved anything made with it, especially the tea itself of course. My latest obsession is actually genmaicha (Japanese green tea) which is so good. I've never made anything with it though, but all these green tea cookies are tempting me. 🙂

  9. Hi Veronica, aren't food blogs just great? I get to see how someone else has experimented with the recipes and this makes me feel braver to try out new recipes because I have all these handy tips and hints from bloggers like you. Thank you!

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