Thursday, May 31, 2007

Scented Geraniums

I am growing scented geraniums this year. A neighbor has inspired me to try these. She keeps them indoors as houseplants over the winter and her plants have done great. I have about eight different kinds from Strawberry to Ginger to Lemon. The boys love plants with scented foilage. Scented Geraniums smell so good. I especially love the the one called "old Fashioned Rose". I am going to try out this recipe when I get a chance.

Rose Scented Geranium Shortbread
makes 8 wedges
These cookies are rich and buttery, with the delicate floral scent of roses.

12 T. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp.
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
1 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. rose water*
2 Tbs sugar or scented sugar
8 large rose scented geranium leaves, washed and dried

Cream the butter and confectioner's sugar until light and fluffy. In another bowl, mix the flour and salt. Add this to the butter mixture. Add the rose water and mix well. Gather the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow it to soften a bit. Butter and flour the bottom of an 8" round baking pan. On waxed paper, pat the dough out to the size and shape of the pan.

Take the geraniums and place them in a circle on the dough, about 1" in from the edge. Press them into the dough. Lay the dough in the pan and pat it out all the way to the edges. Score the dough lightly, dividing it into 8 pie shaped pieces. Sprinkle with the sugar. Refrigerate the dough for another 45 minutes. Preheat the oven to 325�F. Bake the shortbread for about 20 minutes or until it just starts to change color. Allow it to cool in the pan. Remove the shortbread from the pan, take the baked leaves off the bottom. Cut into wedges along the marks and serve, garnished with additional rose scented geranium leaves.

*rose water is available in liquor stores, specialty food stores, and Middle Eastern delis.

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