Baking cookies for Christmas isn’t really a thing in the UK (we make mince pies instead) , so it took me some time to get a handle on just how gigantic a thing Christmas cookies are here in the States. Everyone here seems to spend the entire Christmas season buying cookies, baking cookies, decorating cookies, giving cookies and consuming vast quantities of cookies.
And so I’ve finally got myself in on the action, albeit in a rather restrained way. These pistachio shortbread cookies from the second Macrina Bakery cookbook have a nutty sophistication and are not achingly sweet, just satisfyingly crunchy and very moreish. They’re probably more suited to an adult palate than a kid’s one, though the Minx doesn’t seem to have any problem hoovering up any she finds in her path.
Look guys! I’ve finally got myself a proper recipe card plug-in thingy! Oh WordPress I love you SO.
- 1 cup all-purpose (plain) flour
- 1/4 cup baker's (caster) sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup shelled pistachios
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (1 stick/4 oz) butter, chilled and chopped into small cubes.
- 1/4 cup sugar for topping
- Pulse the flour, sugar, salt, pistachios and vanilla in a food process for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add the butter and pulse until the mixture turns into a paste. Be careful not to overwork the dough.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and form into a log about 2 inches in diameter and 10 inches long. Chilling the dough and a little flour will make it easier to work with.
- Tightly roll the log in Saran wrap (Clingfilm) and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.The dough also freezes beautifully.
- Preheat the oven to 325F or 160C
- Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper
- Cut the chilled dough into 1/2 inch thick discs and place on baking sheets about 2 inches apart.
- Lightly brush each cookied with water and sprinkle with sugar.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes until the cookies are golden brown.
- Cool on the sheet for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- This recipe was not actually adapted at all, it's the straight recipe from the book (I just don't know how to change the recipe card!)