Adapted from Mollie Katzen's Vegetable Heaven
Yield: About 5 dozen 2-inch cookies
Preparation time: 30 to 40 minutes (20 minutes of work)
Once I started adding ground nuts to shortbread dough, I was instantly hooked, and haven't made it plain since.
The nuts get thoroughly coated with butter and toasted to perfection during the baking, and the cookies get infused with a flavor that is out-of-this-world. Try this recipe; they'll be begging you for more.
- Grind the nuts in a food processor or blender with a series of short pulses, so they turn into a fine powder, rather than nut butter.
- This recipe also makes a great pie or tart crust (click here). It's enough for two 9-inch pans.
- You can make the dough in advance and refrigerate or freeze it indefinitely in a sealed plastic bag.
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup ground pecans
1/2 cup ground walnuts
2 cups unbleached all purpose flour (plus extra for rolling the dough)
1/4 teaspoon (rounded measure) salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.
- Place the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Beat at high speed for about 3 minutes, then stir in the nuts.
- Sift the dry ingredients directly into the batter. Use a spoon to mix the dough first, and then your hands, if necessary, working as quickly and efficiently as possible, and mixing just until the dough holds together. (Don't overhandle it.)
- Flour a clean, dry surface and roll the dough to about 1/2 inch thick. Cut it into simple shapes with a knife or a cookie cutter, and place the cookies on ungreased baking trays.
- Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned on the bottom. Cool for at least 10 minutes before eating.