poilane\'s french butter cookies
5 oz unsalted butter
at least 82% butter fat, room temp
1/2 cup sugar
1 whole egg
large in size, room temp
2 cups flour
We tasted these butter cookies at the Poilane bakery in Paris and liked them so much that we brought them back home for friends and family. The ingredients for these cookies are simple, and the flavor is straightforward and clean. We stumbled upon this recipe in the New York Times archives when we were researching why French butter tasted so much better than American butter.
Bring the butter and egg up to room temp. Pull the butter out the night before. Pull the egg out a few hours before baking.
Set the mixer on low to combine all the ingredients. Start by beating the butter until it's smooth. Add the sugar and continue to mix it until it's completely blended into the butter.
Add the egg and beat until the egg is incorporated.
Add the flour and mix, but stop just when the last bit of flour disappears.
Transfer the dough to a work surface and knead it 6 to 8 times until it comes together. Divide the dough in half, then shape each half into a 4-inch disk. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and chill until firm, at least 4 hours.
Position the oven racks in to the 1/3 and 2/3 positions. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Pull the dough out of the fridge about 15 minutes in advance to soften slightly. Working with one disk at a time, roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface until it is between 1/8- and 1/4-inch thick. Using a 1 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out as many cookies as you can. Arrange the cookies on lined sheets. Combine the remaining scraps and form them into a disk, chill, then roll out and cut. Bake the cookies for 8 to 10 minutes or until set; they should barely brown.
Cool the cookies on a rack, then share and enjoy!