Stonewall Kitchen, LLC

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Today is National Pistachio Day (again)!

Today is National Pistachio Day! January 26th is also considered National Pistachio Day, so I am using a bit of that post, plus a new recipe to celebrate this day yet again. (Really, my love for pistachios is so great that every day could be Pistachio Day for me!)

I feel proud to be a Californian, as 98% of American pistachios are grown in California! However, interestingly, typically the number one producer of Pistachios world-wide is Iran, number two is California.

(image from www.californiasungold.com)

We are huge consumers of pistachios, and I find myself chopping them up and adding them to salads and even to vanilla ice cream to add an interesting flavor and texture. I have even experimented with using pistachios as a crunchy coating for chicken.

While I was experimenting with pistachios, I looked up pistachio recipes on Epicurious, and found this recipe for Pistachio Shortbread. These look divine, and while I am trying to give up sweets, I think that these will still have to be taste-tested extensively!

(image from www.Epicurious.com, photo by: Quentin Bacon)

Pistachio Shortbread
Bon App├ętit August 2007
Melissa Clark

Yield: Makes about 60 cookies

This recipe makes plenty of cookies, so bundle up extras (with green ribbon, of course) to send home with guests.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup natural unsalted pistachios, lightly toasted, chopped
1 large egg yolk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preparation:

Mix flour, powdered sugar, and salt in processor. Add butter, pistachios, egg yolk, and vanilla. Using on/off turns, mix until moist ball forms. Transfer dough to work surface. Divide dough in half. Form each dough half into 8 x 1 1/4-inch log (if dough is too soft, chill until firm, about 30 minutes). Wrap logs in plastic; refrigerate until firm, about 4 hours. DO AHEAD Can be made 5 days ahead; keep chilled.

Preheat oven to 325°F. Slice logs into 1/4-inch-thick rounds, rolling log after every few slices to retain round shape. Place rounds on ungreased baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart. Bake shortbread until barely golden, about 18 minutes. Cool shortbread on baking sheets. DO AHEAD Shortbread can be made up to 4 days ahead. Store shortbread in airtight container at room temperature.


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