Sheet Pan

Irish Lace Cookies with Sea Salt

December 18, 2010
3 Ratings
  • Makes about 20 - 24
Author Notes

Adapted from the recipe Irish Lace Cookies, Gourmet, October 1991. My friend Cathy travels to Ireland every so often, and brought me back a bag of Dunany Farm Extra Course Wholemeal Flour. I knew it would make a fabulous soda bread, but I wanted to explore other applications. It works very well in this cookie recipe, producing a super-crunchy, very thin, almost tuile-like delicate cookie. I added bitter cacao nibs and salty sea salt to balance the sugary sweetness of the cookie. I think these would be great with a cup of espresso, or shaped into cups and served with a scoop of good-quality gelato. —mrslarkin

What You'll Need
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups extra-coarse wholemeal flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs
  • fresh cracked sea salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cream the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Beat in the flour, water and vanilla. Stir in the wholemeal flour.
  4. With a small cookie scoop, place a scant 1" ball of dough on a parchment-lined sheet pan, 3 inches apart. They will spread a lot. I fit 5 cookies on each sheet pan. I bake two pans at a time.
  5. Bake for 10 - 12 minutes, rotating pans halfway through, until they are just firm enough to be moved with a metal spatula. Remove pans from oven and immediately sprinkle with sea salt.
  6. When they are still warm, but cool enough to handle, roll into cylinders using a dowel or the handle of a wooden spoon, or shape into a curved, clay roof-tile shape by just gently squeezing together the edges of the cookie. If the cookies harden up on the sheet pan, place back in the oven for 1 minute to soften.
  7. Transfer the cookies to racks and cool completely.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Laura_K
  • Sadassa_Ulna
  • arielleclementine
  • drbabs
  • mrslarkin

19 Reviews

Laura_K January 25, 2011
My husband is from Ireland and so every "Irish" recipe I come across I try! I couldn't find the flour at our local health food store OR at Whole Foods! I did some research and determined ( incorrectly, I think!) that you could susbsitute whole wheat flour....needless to say, they didn't spread at all-- BUT I will be ordering the flour above, and trying again, hopefully with results similar to the photo above--beautiful!
mrslarkin January 25, 2011
Thanks, lark1! I think the original recipe called for oatmeal, the rolled kind. Steel-cut oats are probably closer in texture to the extra-coarse Irish flour, maybe just whiz it in the food processor for a few seconds to get a more "floury" texture. I've heard that graham flour might be close to the Irish wholemeal flour, but I've never tried it. Sorry it didn't work out with the whole wheat flour. Hope you have better luck next time!!
J. A. December 26, 2010
These look delicious! Love the idea of adding cacao nibs!
mrslarkin December 26, 2010
thank you, hummingbirdap! They were very yummy, and stayed crisp for several days!
Sadassa_Ulna December 19, 2010
The cacao nibs sound terrific. I love choc chip cookies and these sound like a crispy (wispy?) wild spin. How do they store/keep? Do they get soft after a while? Can't wait to try these!
mrslarkin December 20, 2010
Thanks!! Just munching on some 2-day old cookies right now. I stored them in air-tight plastic containers. They are still super tasty and super crisp! Definitely NOT a cookie for shipping, though.
arielleclementine December 18, 2010
what a delight! i could probably talk myself into putting these in the 'health food' category- wholemeal flour and cocoa nibs right? sure!
mrslarkin December 18, 2010
thanks! That's what I kept telling myself as I ate them all day yesterday!
drbabs December 18, 2010
And so pretty, too...
mrslarkin December 18, 2010
thanks, drbabs!
mrslarkin December 18, 2010
Here is a source for the wholemeal flour: and I would think Whole Foods or a natural foods store may carry it also.
Lizthechef December 18, 2010
You have out-baked yourself here, Liz! Awesome...
mrslarkin December 18, 2010
Thanks!!!! Easy too. Hey I emailed you just now. Need some info....
Sagegreen December 18, 2010
How beautiful! My Irish grandmother actually made lace, of which I have a few small pieces. You inspire me to make these cookies and photograph the two together.
mrslarkin December 18, 2010
Thanks Sagegreen! That would be a lovely photo!
hardlikearmour December 18, 2010
Awesome, mrsL! I've been wondering what you've done with that flour. These sound delicious, and I love the idea of turning them into gelato cups.
mrslarkin December 18, 2010
Thank you hardlikearmour! Yes! I haven't made the soda bread yet, just because last week was very bread-heavy, but I want to try that, too!
Savorykitchen December 18, 2010
These look fantastic! Can't wait to make them.
mrslarkin December 18, 2010
Thanks, Savorykitchen! I've been munching on them all morning. I should step away from the cookies. ;)