Author Notes: It may come as a surprise, but tehina is perfect in desserts because, in addition to adding nutty flavor, it helps modulate sweetness and leaves you wanting more. For me, there's nothing as comforting as these shortbread cookies enriched with tehina. They are ridiculously easy to make and extremely satisfying. Because the tehina replaces some of the butter in a traditional shortbread, they are actually quite light. (Or at least that's how I rationalize eating ten of them in one sitting.) I love to crumble them on Turkish coffee ice cream or layer them with tehina semifreddo to the make the ultimate ice cream sandwich. But these cookies are perfectly delicious simply dusted with confectioners' sugar and served with coffee.
Excerpted from Zahav: A World of Israeli Cooking (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2015). —Michael Solomonov
Makes: 30 cookies
sticks (7 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
cups all-purpose flour
teaspoon baking powder
pinch kosher salt
- Combine the butter and sugar in a stand mixer on medium speed or in a large bowl with a hand mixer and mix until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the the tehina and continue mixing until well incorporated.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl and whisk together. Transfer to the tehina mixture and beat until just incorporated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight. (This dough keeps well in the freezer for a few months.)
- Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Drop the batter by the heaping tablespoon onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake until the cookies are light brown around the edges and set, about 15 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. The cookies can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for 1 week.
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