The simple sweetness of shortbread cookies make them a fantastic canvas for additional flavors. Spices, florals, honestly almost anything, can be folded into these tender, delicious cookies. Today I thought it would be fun to add my favorite bright and savory flavor, usually found in sushi: yuzukosho.

If you haven’t had it, yuzukosho is a Japanese paste made from fresh chiles (or pepper) then fermented with salt along with zest and juice from yuzu, a tart and fragrant citrus fruit that grows in East Asia. It looks and tastes quite a bit like Kaffir lime, which is found in Thai food. It’s bright, spicy, salty, and immediately lifts anything you add it to, including shortbread cookies.

Served with a glass of green tea, these cookies are unique and so delicious. Enjoy!


2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup powdered sugar

8 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature

1 teaspoon yuzukosho


1 cup powdered sugar

3 tablespoons milk

1 yuzu, zested and juiced (if you can’t find, use 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1/4 teaspoon of yuzukosho)


Preheat oven to 350F.

Sift together the flour, salt, and powdered sugar. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the flour and sugar a third at a time on low speed, then add the vanilla. Form the dough into a ball (or into a few balls, if making a big batch). Wrap the ball in plastic, press into a thick disc, and chill in the fridge until cold, about 30 minutes. The colder the dough, the better the shortbread will be. Also, the dough freezes beautifully and keeps for future use.

On a well-floured surface, roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thick, and cut out using cookie cutters. Roll up the dough, re-roll the dough, and cut out the remaining with cookie cutters. Repeat until you’re done with dough.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the cookies are barely golden brown around the edges.

Remove from the oven and move the cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Mix together the glaze ingredients with a whisk in a bowl.  Add milk or powdered sugar if you want the glaze to be thinner or thicker. Gently dip the top the shortbread into the glaze and set onto a cooling rack over wax paper. Let the glaze set for at least 30 minutes. Enjoy!