I’m sure that if you’re anything like me, and have a bazillion blogs in your Reader that participate in Tuesdays with Dorie, you have seen this recipe more than you care to. You are so over this recipe, I’m sure. Well, I’ve got news for you: you shouldn’t be. Not at all. In fact, you should just make these right now. These cookies are so easy to make and totally worth the minimal effort. They are tender, buttery, and delicious. The fact that these are slice and bake cookies, which makes them even easier to always have around, makes this recipe even better.
I decorated these with red sugar for the holidays, but of course you can use any kind of decorating sugar you prefer. The only change I made to the original recipe was adding vanilla because…I just thought they would be better with it. It’s rare that things aren’t better with vanilla, in my opinion. I also finally decided to bust out the convection setting on my oven during all my holiday baking, and that worked out well enough that I just baked both sheets at the same time.
I’ve made these a couple times now and I’m so happy to have such an easy and well-liked (they got plenty of good reviews) sablés recipe in my repertoire.
Makes about 50 cookies
2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 large egg yolks at room temperature, and 1 egg yolk for brushing the logs
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
Beat the butter in a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until smooth and very creamy. Add the sugars and salt and beat until well blended, about 1 minute. You are looking for a smooth and velvety texture, not fluffy and airy. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the egg yolks, one at a time, and the vanilla, just until incorporated.
Turn off the mixer, pour in the flour, and drape a towel over the mixer (to avoid flying flour). Pulse 5 times at low speed for 1 or 2 seconds each time. If there is still a lot of flour on the surface of the dough, pulse a few more times. Otherwise, remove the towel and, continuing at low speed, mix for 30 more seconds, until the flour disappears into the dough (I use my spatula more toward the end to avoid overmixing). You’re looking for a soft, moist, clumpy dough that should feel like Play-Doh when you pinch it.
Scrape the dough onto a work surface, gather it into a ball and divide it in half. Shape each piece into a smooth log, about 9″ long (it’s easier to use plastic wrap or wax/parchment paper to guide you in making the logs). Wrap the logs well and chill for at least 2 hours.
When ready to bake, center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
Place one log of chilled dough onto a work surface and brush with the egg yolk. Sprinkle the entire surface of the log with sugar, and then slice into 1/3″ rounds.
Place the rounds on the baking sheet, leaving an inch of space between each cookie, and bake for 17 to 20 minutes, rotating the baking sheet at the halfway point. When properly baked, the cookies will be light brown on the bottom, lightly golden around the edges and pale on top. Let the cookies rest 1 or 2 minutes before carefully lifting them onto a cooling rack with a spatula. Repeat with the other log of dough. (Make sure the sheet is cool before baking each batch.)
Slightly adapted from Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan