The walnut is perhaps the most popular nut in Armenia. The walnut tree is a native and you will find the dried ripe nuts in savory and sweet dishes. Unripe nuts are pickled and candied. The Armenian cuisine has strong links with the Turkish, Georgian and Persian cuisine. So here too you will find the delicious sticky baklava and kadaif in their sweet syrup served as a dessert or around coffee and tea time. I baked the traditonial shakerishee cookie that is usually eaten during the holidays. This buttery cookie with its very strong nutty taste melts in your mouth. You will find the cookie with or without half a walnut as decoration. I like the extra crunch of an extra walnut as a topping. Serve this nutty cookie with a cup of Armenian cardamom coffee or a nice strong espresso.
Shakarshee cookie from Armenia
for about 25 cookies
125 grams (1 stick + 1 tbs) soft butter
100 grams (1 scant cup) icing sugar
1 egg yolk
175 grams (1¼ cups) flour
pinch of salt
40 grams (½ cup) walnuts, finely chopped + extra halves for decoration
Beat the butter with the icing sugar until light and creamy.
Add the egg yolk and beat well.
Mix in the flour and salt. Preheat the oven to 150°C / 300°F.
Add the walnuts and quickly form into a soft dough.
Form small balls of dough and place on a baking sheet lined with baking paper. Press a walnut half on each cookie and bake for 15-20 min. until done and still light in color. Let cool on the baking sheet.
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