1 ¼ cups/250 grams granulated sugar
14 tablespoons/198 grams unsalted butter
1 tablespoon finely ground Earl Grey tea leaves, from about 3 tea bags
½ cup/100 grams light brown sugar
¾ teaspoon kosher salt (Diamond Crystal)
½ teaspoon finely grated orange zest
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 ½ cups/320 grams all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
Heat oven to 350 degrees and line two half-sheet pans with parchment paper. Put 1/2 cup/100 grams granulated sugar in a small bowl or shallow dish and set aside.
Combine the butter and tea leaves in a small saucepan set over medium heat. Melt the butter, stirring occasionally, until it just begins to sizzle around the edges. Remove from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes.
Add the tea butter to a large bowl, then add brown sugar, salt, orange zest and remaining ¾ cup/150 grams granulated sugar. Use an electric mixer on medium speed or a whisk to combine for about 30 seconds; the mixture will be grainy and separated. Add the egg and vanilla, and mix until combined and smooth, about 30 seconds.
Add the flour, baking powder and baking soda to the bowl, and mix on low speed or with a rubber spatula until just combined. Use the spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure the dough is evenly mixed.
Use a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop to portion the cookies. Alternatively, measure 2 tablespoons of dough with a measuring spoon. Roll each dough ball in the reserved granulated sugar, then place on the baking sheets 2 inches apart.
Bake the cookies until set, light golden around and crackled on top, 16 to 19 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back in the oven halfway through the baking time. Remove cookies from the oven and let cool on the baking sheets. Store extra cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or for a few weeks in the freezer.