Hibiscus Tea Glazed Shortbread Cookies (Eggless) By Certina Romel

This is a melt-in-a-mouth cookie with a little tartness and lovely hues from wonderful hibiscus flowers. You’ll love making it as much as you’ll love having it with your family.
How I developed this recipe-
I’m in Kerala and last day my mom was talking about the medicinal properties of hibiscus flowers and how we kids used to love our grand mom’s hibiscus chutney and were amazed by it’s beautiful pink colour, which she used to make quite often to make us finish our breakfast plates filled with tiny dosas/idlis. 
Hearing about how good it is for our health and remembering how pretty that pink color was I decided to search for a sweet recipe that too a melt-in-mouth butter cookie recipe, so that my sweet-toothed family would love it. That’s the story of this lovely cookie..
What’s special about this recipe-
Health benefits of hibiscus- These are numerous.. Hibiscus tea, which is basically brewed from dried hibiscus flowers, being packed with anti-oxidants, helps lower body fat levels, blood pressure and even helps in preventing cancer. It’s quite flavourful and fights bacteria too. This easy-to-brew tea promotes liver health as well.
No artificial colours- The natural pretty pink color that I had mentioned in the initial paragraphs comes from the concentration of hibiscus tea itself and thus this additive-free cookie is a bliss in every way.
What you’ll need-
For the cookies-
  • 1/4 dried hibiscus flowers, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup softened butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
For the glaze-
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon loose dried hibiscus flowers (tea)
  • 1/4 cup water
How to make-
For the cookies-
. Preheat the oven to 325 Fahrenheit.
. Whisk together flour, salt & cinnamon in a bowl.
. Cream together the butter until the sugar has almost dissolved, the mixture should be pale and fluffy.
. Add vanilla and blend it in.
. Keeping the mixture on a low stir, add in the dry ingredients and stir-in until well-incorporated.
. Gently stir-in the chopped hibiscus to incorporate as well.
. Gently gather the dough on a floured surface and shape it into a cylindrical log.
. Cut it into half inch circles (~ 17-21 cookies).
. Bake on a parchment lined tray for 16 to 18 minutes.
. Wait to cool down.
For the glaze-
. Brew the hibiscus flowers in boiling water until well concentrated as shown in the figure.
. Once it has cooled down, whisk it up into the powdered sugar until lump free.
. Dip half part of the cookies in it and wait to cool for atleast half an hour to set before having or storing in an airtight container.
Notes, tips and suggestions-
. I you don’t have home-dried hibiscus flowers you could easily find it online or in almost any Trader Joe’s store.
. If the dough is not easily coming together due to stickiness, you could refrigerate it for a while before forming a log.

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