Breton Sand Cookies

My first batch of Christmas cookies are baked! I’ve wanted to make these cookies for a long time now, but I kept postponing it. I finally figured “hey it’s December – I better get a move on!” So here they are: my Breton Sand Cookies or Breton Sablés. Recipe by Pierré Herme (don’t be alarmed by that – they were easy as anything!). My family and I normally differ so much in taste when it comes to cookies, but we both agree on these: they’re fantastic! I made such a big batch and they were all gone very quickly. Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Breton Sand Cookies recipe: Pierré Herme - Desserts.

- 2 ⅓ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
- ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 5 large eggs yolks, lightly beaten

- Sift the flour and baking powder together and set aside for the moment. Working in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until it is soft and smooth. Add the sugar in a slow, steady stream, followed by the salt, and continue to beat, scraping the bowl as needed, for about 3 minutes, or until the mixture is light, pale and fluffy. Add the yolks and beat to incorporate. At this point, the mixture should be light, creamy and satiny. Remove the bowl from the mixer and, working with a large rubber spatula, fold in the sifted dry ingredients, taking special care not to overwork the dough.
- Divide the dough in half and, working on a smooth surface, such as marble, mold each half into a log with a diameter of about 1 ½ inches and a length about 8 inches. The dough is going to be baked inside muffin tins, so you might have to adjust the thickness of the logs to the size of the tins: the logs should be about ¼ to ½ inch slimmer than the muffin cups. Wrap each log in a double thickness of plastic wrap and chill for at least 4 hours.
- Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Set out one or two muffin tins.
- Unwrap one log and, using a sturdy chef’s knife, slice the log into ⅓- to ½-inch-thick cookies. Put one slice of dough in each cup of the muffin tins. Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes, or until they are just firm. These cookies are meant to be pale don’t let them brown: it’s okay if the bottoms are lightly browned, but the tops should remain uncolored. Transfer the cookies to a rack to cool. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Two logs of dough, ready for the refrigerator.

Sliced to a ½-inch tickness.

You're supposed to bake these in muffin tins. Quite frankly, I didn't see the point of it; they didn't rise much in the oven.

And also these cookies got stuck to the pan once they were baked! (I even greased the pan) So after the first batch, I just baked them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Et ta-da! Mon delicious Breton Sablés!

"Buttery, crumbly, rich and addictive" - Dorie Greenspan.
They certainly are!


A Bowl Of Mush said…
Haha there is never a simple way round anything when it comes to pierre herme!

These look lovely, you did a great job! :)
Anonymous said…
mmm tasty! How weird with the muffin tin thing though :S
Interesting, I've never seen a cookie baked in a muffin pan. But then it is a Herme recipe ;p. But seriously, these sound like a classic I need to try.
Madame Sucre said…
thanks for making this look so easy!! ur such an inspiration!
Catherine said…
I love" les sablés Bretons",i'm from Normandy.Nice blog and very good recipes!
Wow, I have to try these!
BonjourRomance said…
This is so funny - I'm sitting here reading all my favorite blogs eating Breton Sands cookie! I'll be trying this recipe this week.
Yours look so delicious!
ENjoy the rest fo your week!
Karine said…
I also find these cookies interesting. Thanks for sharing :)
Great recipe! I guess I have to start my preparation for Christmas too! :)
Anonymous said…
I thought they were supposed to have rum in them.
TIta said…
I had the idea that crossed the sablé bretons with a fork.
cranger907 said…
Did you notice how much they spread? That's a whole lot of butter to flour and sugar. If you roll the log to the diameter of the muffin tin bottom, the cookies don't spread, and they are softer rather than crisp.

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