French Sablés, with their characteristic sandy texture and melt in your mouth delicious. They’re easy to make, and will WOW even your most picky eater!
For some time, I’ve been wanting to try Dorie Greenspan’s Sablés recipe from Baking: From my home to yours. One of the reasons for my procrastination was that the recipe called for egg yolks.
I was concerned that the egg yolks would make the cookie less than the described melt-in-your-mouth tender. Also, I really didn’t want to go through the shaping of the dough into a log, refrigerating it and then cutting the individual Sablés as called for in the recipe.
Several days ago, I made Pierre Hermé’s Sable Viennois which called for piping the dough into different shapes with a 1M-star tip. Interestingly, Pierre Hermé’s recipe used egg whites. Anyway, I thought – why not use the same piping technique for Dorie Greenspan’s recipe? It worked like a charm. Also, my concern about using egg yolks was totally unfounded. The Sablés were as described – crumbly and melt-in-your-mouth tender.
I used the following ingredients for these incredible French Sablés: Unsalted butter, granulated sugar, confectioner’s sugar, fine sea salt and egg yolks. I was surprised that the recipe didn’t call for vanilla extract. Tempted as I was to add a bit, I refrained.
Making the French Sablés
As a start, I beat the butter until it was smooth and creamy. Then, I added the granulated sugar, confectioner’s sugar and salt to the butter, and beat the mixture for about a minute until it was well blended. The recipe cautioned that the mixture should be smooth an velvety, not fluffy and airy.
With the electric mixer on low speed, I added the egg yolks and beat the mixture until everything was well blended. (As an aside, the egg yolks really are that color. I get my eggs from my brother who raises chickens!)
Finally, I added the flour and beat the mixture on low speed just until the flour was incorporated into the dough.
Rather than form the dough into logs for slicing later, I put the dough into a pastry bag fitted with a 1M-star tip, and piped circles onto baking sheets lined with parchment. I use reusable parchment – thus the color!
Into a 350° F oven the cookies went for 12 to 13 minutes, until they were lightly golden brown around the sides. I transferred the cookies to a wire rack to allow them to cool completely. The result was around 3 dozen crumbly and melt-in-your-mouth Sablés. Yum!
If you’d like to try another kind of Sablé, check out my Meyer Lemon Sablés.
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French Sablés (Adapted from Dorie Greenspan's Sable recipe in Baking: From my home to yours)
- 1 cup (2 sticks, 8 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup (3.5 ounces) granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup (1 ounce) confectioner's sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt preferably fine sea salt
- 2 large egg yolks room temperature
- 2 cups (10 ounces) all-purpose flour
- Beat butter in a large bowl at medium speed until smooth and very creamy. Add the sugars and salt; beat until well blended, about 1 minute. The mixture should be smooth and velvety, not fluffy and airy. Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in the egg yolks, again beating until the mixture is homogenous.
- Add the flour; mix on low speed, just until the flour disappears into the dough and the dough looks uniformly moist. (If most of the flour is incorporated but you've still got some in the bottom of the bowl, use a rubber spatula to work the rest of the flour into the dough.) The dough will not clean the sides of the bowl, nor will it come together in a ball - and it shouldn't. You want to work the dough as little as possible. What you're aiming for is a soft, moist clumpy (rather than smooth) dough. Pinch it, and it will feel a little like Play-Doh.
- Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment.
- Transfer dough to pastry bag fitted with a 1M-star tip. Pipe circles, or whatever shape is desired onto prepared baking sheet, leaving 1-inch between the cookies. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes, or until a light brown on the bottom, lightly golden around the edges and pale on the top. Remove from the oven an let the cookies rest a minute or two before carefully lifting them with a wide metal spatula onto a rack to cool to room temperature. Yield: 3 dozen cookies.