One of my favorite friends in all the land is Suzette. I’ve only known her for a couple of years but oh the things we do together. She’s always up for a night out, a night in, and most importantly, she is ALWAYS ready to try everything I make. She has constructive criticism about food and other various sundries (the jeans aren’t too tight, but I really don’t like them). She is also gluten free. We eat together. A lot. Suzette recently moved to New Orleans. There were a couple of going away parties, a few “ooh we have to try this place before I go” and some “let’s make sure we do this before you hit the road.”
The first of the going away parties was a potluck. I wanted to make something I hadn’t made before, something gluten and dairy free, and something for dessert but not too sweet (she doesn’t have a sweet tooth like I do). I also knew we’d be throwing her a going away pie party, so I wanted to do something a little different.
I still had rosemary leftover from Thanksgiving, and that sprig on my windowsill inspired me to make this Rosemary Pecan Shortbread. I overcooked the first batch, made a few updates and continued on. I like them, but I tell you what: there were folks that couldn’t get enough of them. Our friend Marc mentioned he ate 5 and then had to stop himself so others could have some too. So I’m writing these down to remember for next time, they were a good treat and I can imagine that they’d freeze well in dough form too. This would also be perfect for a (sugar-free) holiday gift.
Rosemary Pecan Shortbread
2 cups whole blanched almonds
1/2 cup unsalted, raw cashews
1 1/2 teaspoon rosemary
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sorghum
2 tablespoons arrowroot
6 tablespoons butter (earthspread of course)
5 tablespoons agave
1 cup pecans, lightly toasted
fleur de sel for sprinkling on top
Blend all of the dry ingredients (first 7 listed above) in a food processor. I used cashews in addition to the almonds just to mix things up, and I enjoyed the complexity of the different nuts. However, if you don’t have cashews or prefer all almonds- that would work just fine too.
Add the butter and agave and blend until completely amalgamated. Add the toasted pecans and pulse just until the pecans are the right chunkiness for you. I wanted them to stand out from the cookie base, so I stopped pulsing when they were just barely finely chopped.
Roll the dough into a log, about 3 inches in diameter. It will be very wet, but not sticky. Place in plastic wrap and stick in the freezer for 20-30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350. Remove the dough from the freezer and slice into 1/4 inch-1/2 inch thick slices. Place on ungreased cookie sheet, sprinkle with a little fluer de sel and bake for 10-12 minutes.
Cool for at least 5 minutes before you try to remove from the cookie sheet. They’ll harden just enough to handle easily.