Lavender/Hazelnut Shortbread

I may have out done myself.

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_66b2.jpgIf you have followed me for any length of time you know I love lavender. I will put it in nearly anything. So, I was considering what to serve my guests tomorrow for NYE. Since it’s a late night of adult beverages and snacking I didn’t want anything too sweet or heavy. Add to that my recent successful first try at shortbread in making the Millionaires Shortbread and so decided to whip these up.

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Also, I bought a bag of hazelnuts in the shell before Christmas and cracked them all open myself. This was tedious but a nostalgic turn for me. When I was a girl my grandmother always had nuts you had to crack open yourself at the holidays. It felt nice to sit and crack. I just popped on some cheerful music and cracked away. I just wish I had bought two bags.

Lavender-Hazelnut Shortbread.

They are so fragrant and amazingly tender. Wow. Combine these with the Speculooos (Belgian Spice Cookies) and I’m almost certain no other cookie will ever be necessary. Anyone can make chocolate chip cookies. Why not ramp things up with these? They are more than exceptional. Seriously.

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Okay, so I let these get just a tad too brown but that just made the butter have a more caramel flavor. These are amazing! The problem is not eating them before the party even begins. I was considering dipping these in chocolate but I’m afraid that will take away from the simplicity of their delicate flavor. Maybe the next batch.

Happy New Year to you all. May blessings and lavender abound!

Lavender Shortbread
Ingredients
8 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
5 ounces powdered sugar
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 tablespoon freshly dried lavender buds
1/2 teaspoon each of orange and lemon extract
8 ounces all-purpose unbleached flour
4 ounces finely chopped hazelnuts

Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line sheet pan with parchment paper.
2. Cream butter, sugar, salt, lavender buds, and extract for 3 minutes on high speed.
3. Combine flour and nuts then add flour to butter mixture and mix until just incorporated. Do not over mix.
4. Make into a round and cover in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at lease 30 minutes.
5. Roll out onto floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll to desired thickness and cut with a small circle cutter (or shape of choice). Place on baking sheet and bake for 5-10 minutes, depending on your oven. Let cool before serving.

PS: Sadly my party had to be cancelled due to my friends family emergency. The delicious cookies will not be enjoyed by those they were intended for. On a positive note … my cat Joe loves them and wonders why he can’t have them all.

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