Daily Archives: December 21, 2010

Clementine Meltaways

Happy first day of winter, everyone! I will be celebrating with a wintery walk around Spokane Falls, then a lovely dinner at Wild Sage and a brass-quintet Christmas concert in St. John’s cathedral. And in between will be even more holiday baking.

I don’t know what army my mother and I expect to feed, but we sure are prepared. One batch of cookies are those that I baked for a recent dinner party at my friend Tonya’s house. Called a lime meltaway and featured on Closet Cooking, it is a simple shortbread juiced up with lots of lime zest and juice. Tossed in powdered sugar, the cookies really do melt in your mouth – little chewing required.

My own twist is the substitution of clementines. If you can’t find this citrus, regular oranges will work. I tried with satsuma tangerines, but the rind was too soft to get a good zest out of it. The citrus is such a wonderful addition to the buttery shortbread – these are perfect with tea or as a light dessert after a heavy meal (like Tonya’s lamb chops with mashed potatoes, spinach and roasted tomatoes).

Clementine Meltaways


  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter (room temperature)
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • Zest of two clementines (roughly 3 T)
  • 2 tablespoons clementine juice (1-1 1/2 clementines)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups + 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar

Cream the butter with the powdered sugar. Beat in the zest, juice and vanilla.
Mix the flour, cornstarch and salt in a large bowl.
Beat the dry ingredients into the wet.
Roll the dough out into a 1 1/4 inch log. Wrap in parchment, wax or plastic and let chill in the fridge for at least an hour.
Slice the dough into 1/4 in thick slices and place them on a baking sheet, 1 inch apart from each other. Bake in a preheated 350F oven until just lightly golden brown, about 12-15 minutes.
Let cool on a wire rack for 4 minutes, then dredge cookies in powdered sugar to coat. The powdered sugar will melt a little bit when it hits the steam of the cookie, creating a sticky sheath that will dry into a wonderful glaze.
Enjoy, friends! xoxo