a journal of tea-inspired foods and recipes
Let me introduce you to my new favorite method for infusing tea flavor into anything you’re baking. All you need is butter. Yes, butter. Simply melt the butter you’re using in your next baking project, toss in some flavored tea leaves, let it steep, strain it, and you’re left with a tea-infused butter that will permeate every bite of your baked treat.
I discovered this brilliant method on an old recipe card I found in my tea stash from DAVIDsTEA. They have a recipe for Hot Lips Chocolate Chunk Cookies featuring a red-hot cinnamon candy flavored green tea blend called Hot Lips. This blend is sadly no longer available (at least I couldn’t find it on their website), but I know this recipe would work well with any of the DAVIDsTEA blends that are heavy on cinnamon flavor.
I tweaked the original recipe just a smidge and used white chocolate chips instead of bittersweet chocolate chunks (I had some in the pantry to use up) and pomegranate molasses instead of regular molasses (because I was curious). But the tea-steeped butter is the key flavor here; everything else is just a complement. Try this method with any of your favorite tea blends for your next baking project. I do think a stronger flavored tea is best in this application.
(Adapted from the Hot Lips Chocolate Chunk Cookies recipe by DAVIDsTEA.)
Makes about 24 cookies
¾ cup unsalted butter
6 tablespoons cinnamon-flavored loose leaf tea blend (try any of the cinnamon flavored teas from DAVIDsTEA)
2/3 cup granulated sugar
¼ cup pomegranate molasses (or regular molasses or honey)
6 ounces white (or bittersweet) chocolate chips
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 egg, beaten
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add tea leaves and cook over low heat for about 5 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat, cover and let steep for about 5 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, whisk flour, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl.
4. Once the butter is done steeping, strain it through a fine mesh sieve into a medium bowl. (If the butter started to cool and harden while it was steeping, rewarm it until melted.) Press the leaves with the back of a spoon to get as much butter through the sieve as possible; discard the tea leaves. Stir the sugar and pomegranate molasses into the tea-infused butter then whisk in the egg.
5. Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients. Stir until just combined then fold in the chocolate chips.
6. Form tablespoon sized scoops of the dough into balls and place them about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. You should be able to get about 12 on each sheet.
7. Bake for 7 to 10 minutes or until the edges are golden and the middles are still soft to the touch. Let cookies cool on the pan for a few minutes then transfer to a baking rack to cool completely.
You can freeze either the balls of cookie dough or the baked cookies to save and enjoy at a later date.