Apricot Pine Nut Shortbread Cookies
Greetings from a backcountry road somewhere deep in the southern French countryside! Currently, Ben is driving our tiny rental Peugeot, and I’m holding a Michelin map upside down, trying to navigate us to the next vineyard. We’ve gotten lost four times, but it’s all a part of the Provencal adventure. Plus, we have a bottle of wine and half a baguette in the backseat, so the situation is promising.
The one treat our road trip is missing? Apricot Pine Nut Shortbread Cookies from the wonderful Rachel of Rachel Cooks! While Ben and I are away on our French adventure, some of my dear blogging friends will be guest posting here on TLSW, and I am so excited for you to meet each of them.
To be honest, I can’t remember exactly how I came about Rachel’s blog, but I’m so so glad I did. Besides being an absolute gem who I have been able to turn to for straightforward blog advice (yes, we bloggers need that!), Rachel posts recipes that are simultaneously delicious and attainable. (Her Slow Cooker Moroccan Chicken is a staple in our apartment.) For some additional eye candy, check out this Clementine Vanilla Bean Yogurt Cake.
OK friends, without further ado, the wonderful Rachel of Rachel Cooks!
Hi everyone, I’m Rachel from Rachel Cooks and I’m so happy to be here helping out Erin while she’s off sipping wine and eating macarons in Paris. Just to quickly introduce myself, my blog is all about family-friendly food that is easy to prepare and even easier to eat and enjoy. I’m a stay at home mom of two, so easy meals…well, they’re important, because without them, we wouldn’t eat. Want to know more about me? Head on over to my site and find out what food I’m obsessed with (I feel like the whole world knows the answer to that already), why I have a soft spot for London, what bones I’ve broken (because I’m sure you totally care) and more.
If you browse my site at all, you’ll also find that I’m a sucker for shortbread cookies. Mostly because I can roll the dough into a log, stick it in the freezer and have it ready and waiting. Waiting for my random cooking craving (Not so random – usually comes every day right when the kids go down for their naps. Funny how that works out.) Waiting for last-minute visitors who need a cookie to go with their coffee. Waiting for that phone call from church – “Can you bring cookies to the event at church tomorrow?” Stuff like that. Cookie dough in the freezer makes life easier in so many ways. And these pretty little cookies are perfect for those occasions where you want to impress those last-minute guests.
Wow – she baked these beautiful cookies? We only called and said we were coming by just an hour ago! How does she does it?
Super mom? Nah. Cookie dough in the freezer. It’s the key to success in life. Okay maybe not the key (that’s still hard work, folks, sorry) but it certainly helps.
You might be scratching your head at these cookies – apricots? Pine nuts? Honey? I can assure you – all these flavors work perfectly together and make for the prettiest, tastiest cookie. The honey compliments and sweetens the pine nuts and the apricots and the lemon brightens everything up and keeps these cookies from being too rich. The apricots give a nice chewy texture and the pine nuts provide that crunch that you need in a cookie.
Apricot Pine Nut Shortbread Cookies
- 3 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter — (3 sticks) room temperature
- 3/4 cup packed powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/4 cup honey — plus 2-3 tablespoons extra for brushing cookies
- 1 cup finely diced dried apricots
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- turbinado sugar — for sprinkling on cookies before baking
- In a medium sized bowl, combine flour, salt and baking powder. Set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together butter and sugar for about 3 minutes or until light in color and fluffy. Add 1/4 cup honey and lemon zest and beat until just combined. Scrape sides of bowl as necessary.
- Add flour mixture gradually and continue to mix until just combined. Add diced apricots and pine nuts and mix until evenly incorporated. Do not over mix. Move dough onto a large sheet of wax or parchment paper and shape into a long, skinny log (about 2 inches in diameter). Roll up in the parchment or wax paper and freeze dough overnight.
- When you’re ready to bake the cookies, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Take dough out of the freezer and cut slices off that are about 1/4-inch thick. Place on parchment or Silpat-lined baking sheets. Heat 2-3 tablespoons of honey in microwave for 10-15 seconds. Brush over cookies and immediately sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until just golden brown. Let cool about 5 minutes on baking sheets before removing to a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container.
Did you try this recipe? I want to see! Follow Well Plated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!
(Every recipe I share on my site is followed by “Verdict, Husband’s take, Changes I would make, and Difficulty” to give you a little more information about the recipe, I’ll do the same here!)
Verdict: These are a fun and unexpected cookie. Definitely fun to mix things up every so often.
Husband’s take: My husband always, always, always prefers chocolate chip cookies. But I saw him sneak more than a few of these so that’s a great sign!
Changes I would make: None are necessary.
Thanks so much for having me, Erin! I hope you have the most amazing trip!
I’d love for you to stop by Rachel Cooks and say hi some time! You can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, and Instagram. Or you can subscribe to my emails and never miss a recipe!
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