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Hibiscus Key Lime Glazed Sugar Cookies

There is something irresistible about a glazed sugar cookie, as I think they are a part of so many childhood memories. This is my mother’s sugar cookie recipe, she would do a batch every holiday and would either glaze them or press two together with a dried fruit filling. This is a new twist on the glaze though, the vibrant pink color comes naturally from the hibiscus tea which also gives the glaze a floral tart flavor and the key lime adds to that flavor beautifully.

Makes 3 dozen 2" cookies

Sugar Cookies

Sift together:

1 ¼ cups flour

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

½ teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon salt

Cream together with a hand-held mixer:

½ cup vegetable shortening (use organic such as Spectrum which is non hydrogenated)

½ cup sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 tablespoon whole milk

  • Sift the dry ingredients together and set aside

  • Cream together the wet ingredients until the shortening is well incorporated

  • With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until it is just incorporated

  • Scrape the dough onto a sheet of parchment paper and pat into a disk. The dough will be soft and sticky. Wrap and refrigerate for about 3 hours or until well chilled and firm

  • On a floured board roll out the disk of dough to about ⅛” thickness

  • With a cookie cutter, press into the dough and use a spatula to transfer the cookies to a lined baking sheet. Gather and reroll the scraps

  • Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 5-7 minutes and watch carefully as they brown quickly - they are done when the edges are lightly browned

  • Transfer to a wire cooling rack and cool completely

Hibiscus Key Lime Glaze

2 cups powdered sugar

2 tablespoons hibiscus tea (½ cup boiling water, 1 hibiscus tea bag)

2 tablespoons key lime juice

  • Combine the boiling water and the hibiscus tea bag and allow to cool to room temperature

  • Squeeze the key limes until you get 2 tablespoons (about 3) or use one regular lime.

  • Combine the glaze ingredients and stir until smooth (there will be leftover tea)

  • With a fork, drizzle the glaze over the cooled cookies

  • Let the glaze harden a bit before serving


I use chopsticks on either side of the dough along with my tapered rolling to achieve a consistent thickness in the dough - when the rolling pin runs along the chopsticks I know I have about ⅛” thickness


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