These super easy to make shortbread cookies are a burst of flavour and colour. A perfect contrast of green and red colour from cranberries and pistachios gives you the festive vibe and are also very inviting to munch with a cuppa.
These light and buttery shortbreads give the right balance of sweetness and crunch from the fruit and nut used in the cookies. I try to keep a batch ready at the back of my freezer handy to make them for a lunch box snack at times.
You can also add some dark chocolate chips to add to the crunch and sweetness.
Make it during festive times and it can be a perfect little gift treat for Christmas, wrapped up in a bag and tagged with fancy ribbon.
YIELDS: 25-30 cookies
PREP TIME: 20 minutes
BAKING TIME: 12-15 minutes
PASSIVE TIME: 1 hour
3 cups all purpose flour
1 cup caster sugar
1 1/4cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp baking powder
1 egg, room temperature
1/2 cup dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup unsalted shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
In a stand mixer bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy and pale in colour. Add the extracts and egg, and blend for 2 minutes until the egg is well combined.
In a large bowl, sift flour, salt and baking powder. Add cranberries and pistachios to dry mix.
Drop 1/3 of the dry ingredients to the butter mix and blend for 2 minutes until combined.
Add the remaining dry flour mix in two batches to the butter mixture and blend until it is well combined.
Turn out the dough onto a floured surface. Knead lightly to make it smooth. Divide the dough in 2 batches. Shape one batch of the dough into a thick log, about 2 inch thick in diameter. Place the log on large sheet of cling film and wrap it tightly. Twist and knot the sides of the plastic wrap to secure from the ends. Freeze it for 1 hour.
Repeat step 5 for the other batch.
Preheat oven to 160°C fan-forced. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Remove the cookie dough out from the freezer, unwrap the cling film and cut the log into 1/4 inch thick discs. Place them on cookie sheet 1.5 inch apart and bake for 12-15 minutes until slightly golden brown around the edges.
Transfer on to the cooling rack and cool completely before storing in an airtight jar.
These logs can be prepared days ahead and stored in freezer.
The wrapped dough logs will stay in freezer for up to 2-3 months. Discard the plastic and cut and bake as per the recipe.
If preserving the cookie dough in freezer for later use, make sure these logs are wrapped tightly in the plastic wraps to avoid freeze burning.
Baked cookies store well up to a week in an airtight jar.
Don't over bake the cookies else your shortbreads will be slightly hard.