Before I went to Morocco I had never eaten a pistachio. The closest I had come to a pistachio was in the Jello pudding my dad ate. But, once I ate one, well I was hooked – and a little upset that I had missed out on this delicious nut for the first 20 years of my life. I’m making up for it now.
Like the lemon, vanilla, and almond ghriba I shared earlier this week, these ghriba are gluten-free and delicious. Pistachios have a unique flavor that some people really don’t like. As I began to look for a good flavor to pair them with I struggled. What I remembered about the pudding my dad loved was that the pistachio pieces were a strange consistency. They weren’t crunchy and they weren’t soft – they were something in the middle. I hated that texture. I succeeded with these cookies. The outsides have just a little crunch, while the insides are soft but not mush. I know not everyone has rosewater, so if you don’t you can use vanilla.
- 2 cups pistachios
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tsp rose water
- 4 egg yolks
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 4 Tbsp butter
- powdered sugar for dusting
- whole pistachios to top cookies
- parchment paper or silpat
- Preheat your oven to 350F.
- In a food processor, blend the pistachios until they are broken down to almost a powder.
- In a large bowl combine pistachio flour, granulated sugar, and baking powder.
- Add to the dry ingredients the rosewater and egg yolks.
- Break up the butter with your hands or a pastry cutter and begin working into the dough.
- Using your hands or pastry cutter mix all of the ingredients until everything has been combined, the dough will feel slightly sticky.
- From small balls with your hands, about 1" in diameter.
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silpat sheet.
- Coat the balls with powdered sugar and place onto a cookie sheet or plate.
- Refrigerate the cookies for 30 minutes, or place in freezer for 10 minutes.
- Arrange cookies on baking sheet and gently press a pistachio into the top of each. Do not flatten the cookies, they will naturally shape.
- Bake for 10 - 12 minutes. The cookies should still be a pale color.
- Leave on the baking sheet for 5-10 minutes to allow the cookies to finish setting, then transfer to a cooling rack.
- When the cookies are completely cool, transfer to an air tight container.
- Cookies can be stored on the counter for 1-2 weeks, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. To serve, remove from the freezer and allow to warm up before serving.