Spiced Pecan Sablés
This recipe is a twist on the more typical almond sablés. I have used pecans in place of almonds and added spices, which makes this a great holiday cookie. Walnuts also work beautifully in this recipe. You can usually substitute nuts by weight in a simple recipe like this; however, keep in mind that different nuts have different fat contents. For example, walnuts and pecans are oilier than almonds and hazelnuts, so the nut you choose may affect the final result.
- Yield: About 36 cookies
1 cup all-purpose flour
¾ cup pecans, toasted and finely crushed; reserve 2 tbsp for topping
¾ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp salt
⅔ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup + 2 tsp granulated sugar
2 tbsp whole egg, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp bourbon (optional)
Egg wash (1 egg yolk whisked with 1 tbsp of water and a pinch of salt)
Gold leaf for garnish (optional)
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pecans, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Set aside until ready to use. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, combine butter and sugar, beating on medium speed until mixture becomes pale (about 3 minutes). Add egg, vanilla and bourbon, and mix on medium speed for another 3 minutes until mixture is incorporated.
Stop mixing, and scrape down sides of bowl with a spatula. Add dry ingredients and start mixer on low. Mix for about 30 seconds, just until there is no more dryness in the dough. If necessary, scrape down sides of bowl and mix on low for 10 more seconds.
Take dough and shape into a square roughly 6 inches across. Wrap with plastic and let rest in the fridge for at least an hour or overnight.
When ready to roll out dough, preheat oven to 325°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Divide dough into two pieces for easier rolling. Lightly dust your dough and work surface with flour. Start rolling dough from the centre to the edge, rotating dough 90 degrees after each roll and dusting with flour if necessary. Roll dough to about ¼ inch thick. Cut out rounds or festive cookie shapes of about 2 inches, and place about 1 inch apart on the baking sheets.
Lightly brush a layer of egg wash on the cookies, avoiding the edges, and sprinkle reserved pecans on top. If you wish, top cookies with gold leaf. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through, until edges and bottoms are golden brown. Cool before serving. Store in an airtight container for up to a week.