Vanilla Sablé Cookies with Chocolate Drizzle & Pistachio Crumble

Can you really get into the Christmas spirit without baking a homemade batch of Christmas cookies? I didn’t think so.

Christmas + cookies are like peanut butter + jelly, spaghetti + meatballs, charcuterie + cheese… I could go on and on. There’s a reason why you can find so many cookies recipes online during the holiday season because cookies become increasingly popular during this time of the year. Not only does Santa like a fresh batch of cookies but so does everyone else. One of my favorite types of cookies is a simple shortbread cookie. The satisfaction I get from a small, crunchy, buttery, sugary, shortbread cookie doesn’t amount to anything else.

Sablé translates to “sand” in French, and a sablé cookie is simply a round shortbread biscuit or cookie which originates in Sablé-sur-Sarthe in 1670. There’s your fun history fact of the day. Behind every good recipe is a history lesson! You’re welcome.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:  I am not a baker. I am not patient or meticulous enough to design fabulous cakes or other confectioneries; however, I can do basic cookie recipes. Although this cookie recipe is basic, it is unique in its own simple way. Whether you want to bake these for your office holiday party, your friends or just yourself, you’ll be glad you did because they are so good!

For this recipe you will need:

2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (I used whole wheat flour b/c it was all I had)

3/4 tsp ground cardamom

3/4 tsp kosher salt

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 vanilla beans, split lengthwise & seeds removed, OR 1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

1 large egg yolk

1/4 cup honey

Melting chocolate

Pistachios, processed in food processor

  1. Whisk together all dry ingredients:  flour, ground cardamom and kosher salt. Set aside.
  2. In large bowl or stand mixer, cream together the sugar, softened butter and vanilla.
  3. Add egg yolk and honey to the sugar/butter mixture.
  4. On a low speed, add the dry ingredients in 2 additions. Stopping and scraping the bowl to ensure everything is combined each time.
  5. Sprinkle a small amount of flour onto a clean work surface. Knead the dough a couple of times (kneading too much will cause the dough to become tough) and divide the dough in half.
  6. Roll each half into a 9″ log. Wrap in parchment paper and then in plastic wrap.
  7. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. *You may prepare the dough days in advance by freezing before using.*
  8. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. On a clean work surface, scatter 1 cup sanding sugar (granulated sugar also works fine).
  9. Working with the dough logs one at a time, unwrap and roll in the sugar.
  10. Slice the dough into 1/4″ – 1/2″ thick rounds. Place the cookies on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and space them 2″ apart. Continue with second dough log.
  11. Bake the cookies, rotating halfway through, for 13-15 minutes. The cookies will turn brown on the edges but remain pale in the center. Don’t be fooled by the paleness and continue to bake longer!
  12. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.
  13. Optional:  Once the cookies are completely cooled, melt the chocolate and dip half of the cookie into the chocolate and sprinkle with pistachio crumbs. Allow to cool on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.

This cookie recipe is so easy and fun! I highly recommend preparing a batch for Santa. 😉 Or simply eat them all by yourself with a cup of hot cocoa.

Happy Holidays!



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