pistachio and tangerine cookies

I have one more pistachio recipe to share and I think it’s a good one! I wanted to use some leftover pistachios to make a variation of the Russian Tea Cakes, which are usually made with walnuts. A quick search for a recipe on Google yielded a similar cookie, Pistachio Snowballs, from Dandy Sugar which combines pistachio with tangerine. This is a new flavor combination for me and I was immediately intrigued. Serendipitously, I had a couple of tangerines that I bought last week for a recipe I ended up not making (and frankly, don’t remember). I love it when I find a recipe to make and I have all the ingredients at hand.

Apologies to the pistachio tangerine cookies because the photo above does not do them justice. For me, these cookies are the perfect combination of pistachio and tangerine. Each of their flavors stand out, yet, together they achieve a harmonious balance. At first I was a little disappointed that they did not hold their round shape, but in the end, I liked the way they flattened out. Was I supposed to put the dough back in the fridge or something? Oh, well! Also, I misread the recipe and accidentally put more than double the sugar than I was supposed to, but I am pleased with the result so I modified the recipe I am sharing. I served the cookies this afternoon and no one thought they were too sweet, but for the original recipe and a photo of what they were meant to look like, click on the recipe link below.

Pistachio and Tangerine Cookies
Adapted from a recipe by Dandy Sugar
Yields approximately 1 dozen 2-inch diameter cookies

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup shelled, unsalted roasted pistachios, chopped medium-fine (be careful not to overdo it)
2 heaping teaspoons freshly grated tangerine zest
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/8 cups all-purpose flour

powdered sugar, for dusting cookies

Heat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silicon baking mat. Set aside.

Combine butter and powdered sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add pistachios, tangerine zest, salt, vanilla extract, and almond extract. Continue mixing until ingredients are well incorporated. Add flour and mix just until incorporated, about 30 seconds (do not overmix).

Shape dough into tablespoon-size balls. Place 1-inch apart on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until bottoms begin to brown, about 13-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly on the baking sheet, about 10 minutes. Once slightly cool, dust generously with more powdered sugar. ( I dusted mine with the powdered sugar as they did not come out round, as I expected. Nonetheless, it was still yummy!).


10 thoughts on “pistachio and tangerine cookies

  1. Pingback: chocolate cinnamon crinkle cookies « daisy's world

  2. Pingback: my favorite dishes of 2011 « daisy's world

  3. I think your photos always look great, Daisy!

    Pistachio and tangerine sounds like a delicious, unique combination, too. I’m going to try and make these at school this week if my chef instructor doesn’t catch me raiding the pistachios — if I can get them in the batter before he notices, it’ll be aaaaall good. 😉

      • I’ve had trouble with making round cookies stay round before, and the only solution I’ve come up with is to 1) shape the cookies as evenly as possible and 2) chill them before baking. It’s hard to make cookies with nuts and chips and whatever hold their shape, too, since the stuff inside increased the tendency for irregularities in their structure. Damn you, cookies!


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