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Hazelnut Ginger Shortbread
(recipe, Karen Brooks)
Crystallized ginger lends an intriguing note to nutty butter cookies. The recipe was created by Sara Perry. The shortbread can be stored in a tin for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- 1½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 Tbsp. coarsely chopped crystallized ginger
- ½ cup plus 1 Tbsp. sugar
- ¼ cup plus 1 Tbsp. hazelnuts, roasted, skinned, and ground
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- Preheat an oven to 325 degrees. Position a rack in the middle of the oven.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, ginger, the ½ cup sugar, and the ¼ cup hazelnuts. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Gather the dough into a ball.
- Place the ball in an ungreased 8-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Press the dough evenly into the pan. Pierce the entire surface with the tines of a fork. Then score the surface into 12 wedge-shaped pieces.
- Place in the oven and bake until golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven. While the shortbread is still warm, slice it along the scored lines and sprinkle the top with the remaining hazelnuts and sugar. Let cool completely on a wire rack before removing from the pan.
Culinate editor's notes: For more complex flavor, replace half of the flour with whole-wheat pastry flour; in that case, you may also need an extra tablespoon or two of butter to make the mixture come together. If you wish, it's fine to replace half of the sugar with brown sugar or swap in pecans, walnuts, or almonds instead of hazelnuts. Chill the dough at least two hours before baking for a flaky, sandy shortbread.