Chinese Five-Spice Tea Cookies

If you recall, my last post was a Furious Five-Spice Noodle Soup.   I hadn’t had a lot of experience with this spice but I am now in love with it.

The smell of the cinnamon, cloves, star anise, and fennel along with the spiciness of  Szechuan peppercorns made me think how good these flavors (and smells) would be in a cookie.   A quick search and I found a recipe to adapt.

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Chinese Five-Spice Tea Cookies
adapted from Culinate (from Martin Yan’s Asian Favorites by Martin Yan)

1 c. butter, at room temperature
1/2 c. sugar
2 t. almond extract
1/3 c. lite sour cream
1 c. whole wheat flour
1 ½ c. all-purpose flour
1/2 t. Chinese five-spice powder

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter until creamy. Beat in sugar, almond extract and sour cream.

In another bowl, stir together flours and five-spice. With mixer running, gradually add to butter mixture, blending thoroughly.

Shape dough into two discs, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm, about 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place one disc on a lightly floured surface. Roll into a sheet about ⅓ inch thick. With a cookie cutter, cut dough into circles (or cut with a sharp knife into strips 2½ inches long and ½ inch wide).  Repeat.

Place cookies 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake until lightly browned, 25 to 30 minutes.

Let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack and let cool completely.

Store in an airtight container.

The original recipe called for less five-spice and did not include sour cream.  I thought the dough was too crumbly so I added the cream and increased the amount of spice.  I also used some whole wheat flour.

2014-04-27 16.07.30These are a not-too-sweet shortbread and would be perfect with tea or coffee.

I am continuing to think of ways to use this great powder.   After some surfing, I found that a tidbit can give chocolate dishes a “haunting” flavor, is delicious in fruit chutneys, could be used for a “dusting” for scrambled eggs (color me intrigued on that one)…..

I thought my spice jar might last me a long time…now I am not so sure!  🙂


Happy May Day!

15 comments to Chinese Five-Spice Tea Cookies

  • I like 5-spice! Tried it making a chiffon cake before and it was so good! I am sure I will love these cookies too. But you know what? I love your serving plate even more!
    Happy May to you too, Debra.

  • teaandscones

    5-spice cookies ! Great idea.

  • Gorgeous cookies my friend, they look addictive 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  • This would make a great cookie to go with tea. The tweaks you mentioned to the original recipe sounds like good ones. The inclusion of sour cream in this type of cookie intrigues me. I think I am going to have to make these and test drive them at work.

    • Thanks of stopping by, Carol. Just did a cursory look at your site and am impressed. Going back now to read some more. I do hope you make these cookies and enjoy them with tea.

  • Kelly @ Inspired Edibles

    These tea cookies are so beautiful… delicate and delicious sounding. I love the different sizes you used and your decorative spring plate is so pretty. Talk about the perfect background to showcase these lovely biscuits.

  • I am so intrigued by the notion of five spice cookies, Debra. I love the stuff but never in a million years would I think to include it in cookies with sour cream no less! I bet they are delicious and as you say even more tasty with time. I may never look at Five Spice in the same way again,lol…Thank you so much for sharing, Debra…

    • Thanks, Louise. There are only two left. I am dying to use the spice in a chocolate dessert and I may even get brave enough to sprinkle it on eggs! 🙂 Who knows?

  • thelady8home

    Such great looking spicy cookies…I adore spice sugar cookies.I bet they would be just perfect with a cup of tea 🙂

  • Lovely! mmm… looking forward to try with a cup of tea