Wood sorrel (Oxalis) grows all over North America. You’ll find it on lawns, popping up in gardens and in the cracks of sidewalks. This little plant was my first wild edible. One of the neighborhood kids on Blueberry Lane told me to taste it, that it was sour like a pickle. Since I love pickles, I popped a leaf into my mouth. It was sour, hence the names, sour grass and lemon clover.
The heart shaped leaves, yellow flowers and seed pods are all edible. We add it to salads, smoothies, and have made tea with it. It’s one of those plants I always pick and eat as a trail side treat.
Here, the leaves are simply a decoration for lemon shortbread cookies.
Lemon Shortbread with Wood Sorrel
- 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- zest of a small lemon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg white, beaten
- handful of wood sorrel leaves
Beat butter and powdered sugar in the bowl of stand mixer until smooth. Add lemon zest and vanilla and beat until combined. Beat in flour and salt just until all the flour is blended in. Place the dough ball onto a piece of plastic wrap and shape into a disc. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350*F at the half way point of chilling the dough. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Unwrap dough, with a sheet of plastic wrap on the bottom and another one over top, roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Using a cookie cutter or a small drinking glass, cut out cookies and place onto prepared baking sheet.
Dip the tip of your finger into the beaten egg white and dot some onto each cookie and carefully place a leaf on top.
Bake for 10-15 minutes, until the edges start to brown lightly. Cool on a wire rack. Cookies taste better with each new day.
The final result isn’t as vibrant green but still pretty. You can swap out the wood sorrel with any edible leaf or flower.