The kind folks at Old City Salts sent me a complimentary one ounce packet of Thai Ginger Sea Salt to play with. They didn’t ask me to write a post, but I did. And this is it.
Thai Ginger Key Lime Wedding Cookies, your time has come. Finally.
I haven’t posted a recipe in longer than I care to admit. But it has been a long time. Yes, I’ve been cooking and baking all along since we do have to eat, but I just haven’t felt inspired or excited enough to write. I look around at some blogs and see postings that just seem like filler. Like they needed to post to keep to a schedule, so they made a quick snack, wrapped some twine around it and took some pretty pictures and called it a post.
I just can’t bring myself to do that. I figure if you’re going to take the time to wander over here that you should be greeted with a passionate post, that maybe you’ll learn something and maybe smile or even laugh. And that you’ll be inspired to make my recipe or put your own spin on it. What I don’t want is for you to come here and be Underwhelmed. I’d rather you be sad that I haven’t posted recently than have you be disappointed in what I have posted.
And so we come to the Thai Ginger Key Lime Wedding Cookies. I was contacted by the lovely folks at Old City Salts to see if they could send me one of their sea salt chef’s blends to use in my baking. They offered an espresso salt, but I am so in love with the Baker’s Brew from Savory Spice Shop and have used it in so many of my recipes that accepting espresso salt felt like cheating on my boyfriend. Fortunately, they were very understanding and said, “Hey, how about some Thai Ginger Sea Salt instead?” Yes!
Growing up, ginger was one of those flavors that I only knew in a very middle class American way. Ginger ale. Sweet and sour sauce. Ginger ale. Did I mention ginger ale? I am slowly discovering the many sides of ginger as an adult, but it’s still not a spice that I grab without thinking about it. I have to plan for ginger. And this week, the plan came together.
My wonderful wish-she-were-my-sister Cheryl from Pook’s Pantry gifted me with a bag o’ key limes a couple of weeks ago, and I’d been waiting for inspiration to strike in key lime world. As soon as the Thai Ginger Sea Salt arrived at the house, my plan fell into place. I almost didn’t have to think about it.
- I like wedding cookies.
- I could totally shove some ginger salt into some wedding cookies
- That seems a little boring. What would be lovely with the ginger?
- I think I own an orange!
- Oh, hullo orange. Sorry, but the key limes look more interesting to me.
These cookies, oh my goodness. You guys, I am so pleased with how these came out! Buttery, delicate, crumbly-crunchy, sharp with key lime, warm with ginger, well-seasoned with the ginger salt. Lightly sweet. Lightly savory. Makes sense, too. Pecan, lime and ginger are flavors equally at home in both savory and sweet dishes. And these little cookies, as unassuming-looking as they are, really do strike the perfect balance between sweet and savory.
`You can play up the sweetness to whatever extent you like by adding more or less powdered sugar coating or even leaving it off entirely.
- 8 oz (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar, , sifted
- 1/2 teaspoon Thai Ginger Sea Salt, (or other fine sea salt)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons powdered ginger, (more or less, to taste)
- 1 Tablespoon key lime juice, (fresh or bottled, such as Nellie and Joe's)
- zest of 3 key limes or one Persian lime
- 1 cup pecans, , toasted and finely ground in a food processor
- 10 oz all purpose flour, (see note)
For the Powdered Sugar Coating
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2-1 teaspoon Thai ginger sea salt, , or to taste (or other fine sea salt)
- 1 teaspoon powdered ginger, , or to taste
- Cream the butter, sugar, salt, ginger, zest and juice until very creamy and smooth.
- Beat in the pecan meal on low speed.
- Beat in the flour on low speed until everything is evenly combined.
For Traditional Wedding Cookie shapes
- Portion cookies at about 1 1/2 Tablespoons each. Roll into balls and place on a baking stone or cookie sheet covered with parchment or Silpat. These cookies barely spread, so you only need to leave about 1 1/2" between them.
- Bake at 325F for about 20-25 minutes, until fairly firm and barely browned.
- Let cookies cool on the racks for about 5 minutes and then roll gently but thoroughly in the powdered sugar coating. Double dip them for added sweetness.
For Slice and Bake
- Roll dough into a log of whatever diameter you want. Chill until firm.
- Slice into about 1/3" slices and place on a baking stone or lined cookie sheet, leaving about 1 1/2" between the cookies.
- Bake at 325F for about 15-18 minutes until fairly firm and barely browned.
- Let cool on the sheet for 5 minutes and then toss gently but thoroughly in the powdered sugar coating. Double dip for extra sweetness.
- You can also roll the dough in the sugar before baking.
For the Powdered Sugar Coating
- Whisk all ingredients together thoroughly. Taste and add more ginger and/or more salt if you need to. It shouldn't taste salty, but there should be a noticeable salt bite or two in the midst of the sweet. The ginger should make your tummy warm. But it should not make you sweat.
Use 10oz all purpose flour for a crumbly-yet-sturdy cookie. Use 5 oz each of cake flour and all purpose for a more delicate-crumbly cookie. Your choice.
I took four of the ginger lime cookies with me to my chiropractor’s office today. They were Quite the Hit, I must say. Carol, Dr. Schneider’s wife and my friend, is going to make a kosher version this week, even. I am always so honored when folks want to make something that I’ve made. I hope the rabbis enjoy them.