Shortbread Finger Biscuits


One of my favorite treats to have during the holidays is one that I can enjoy with a hot cup of tea. These traditional Scottish shortbread finger biscuits are one of those favorites of mine. I come back to the same recipe year after year, but this time I decided to try something new. Going on a tip from a Scottish woman to use a portion of rice flour for a more tender cookie, I instead decided to use garbanzo bean flour.

I've been meaning to use garbanzo bean flour ever since I purchased a package some time ago. I had intended to use it for making Besan Ladoo, an Indian sweet made from gram flour, which is their name for garbanzo bean or chick pea flour. I haven't had the chance to make that sweet yet, but I took the opportunity to use the flour for the first time. It turned out to be a very good idea. I achieved a much more tender cookie than what I've made in the past. And to gild the lily a bit, I dipped a third of each finger in melted semisweet chocolate and then sprinkled it with chopped pistachios. I must say they turned out great.

Shortbread Finger Biscuits

1-1/3 cups (2 sticks and 6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus 2 tablespoons for pan
2/3 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup garbanzo bean flour

Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking pan.

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, sugar, salt, and vanilla on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add flours a little at a time on low speed, and mix until combined.

Turn out dough into the prepared pan. Using a sheet of plastic wrap, press until dough reaches edges and smooth evenly with a spatula before removing wrap. Using a ruler, measure and cut crosswise every 1 inch and lengthwise every 3 inches, forming 36 1-by-3-inch finger-size biscuits. Score tops with the tines of a fork.

Bake for about 80 minutes or until edges are pale to lightly golden. While still slightly warm, retrace biscuits with a sharp serrated knife. Let cool completely. Shortbread can be stored in a sealed container for up to a month. Yield: 36 biscuits.

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