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CARLA HALL Hedge Hog Pecan Shortbread Cookies

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Delicious, cute, and sure to be the hit of your holiday cookie swap!

2 cups pecans (toasted and ground)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted, chilled butter (cut into cubes)
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup chocolate baking chips (melted)
1/4 cup chocolate sprinkles

In a large bowl, add the pecans, flour and salt, and whisk to combine.
In a separate bowl, add the butter and sugar, and whisk just to combine. (The mixture will be grainy; it should not be pale and fluffy.) Add the egg yolk and extracts and whisk to combine.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix to combine.
On a lightly floured work surface, form dough into disk. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350ºF.
Uncover the dough and place on a lightly floured work surface. Shape 1 tablespoon of the dough into a ball & pinch dough forward to form the face. Repeat the process until all dough is used. Place formed cookies on a baking sheet, about 2 inches apart.
Bake for 10-15 minutes.
In a small saucepan, melt chocolate and stir until smooth. Holding a hedgehog cookie by the nose, spoon chocolate over the back. Place the cookie on wax paper and coat the wet chocolate with chocolate sprinkles. Dip a toothpick in chocolate and make two eyes and a nose. Let stand until set.
Store in an airtight container.

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