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Buttery Pecan Shortbread

Shortbread cookies are moist, buttery, and lovely. And loaded with calories and saturated fat. In these cookies, we use a healthier fat and protein-packed pecans to make them all the better for you.
Makes 24–36 cookies

Ingredients
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans
2 cups whole- wheat pastry flour
Generous pinch sea salt
Generous pinch ground cinnamon
1 cup vegan buttery spread (like Earth Balance)
½ cup brown rice syrup
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Chocolate glaze (optional):
6 ounces non-dairy dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

Directions
Mix pecans with flour, salt, and cinnamon. In a separate bowl, using a hand mixer, whip the vegan buttery spread, syrup, and vanilla until smooth and fluffy, 2–3 minutes. Combine with flour mixture to create a soft dough. Gather into a ball,; wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for 1 hour before proceeding.

Preheat oven to 350°F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Divide the dough in half. Re-wrap one half and return to the fridge. Roll the other half between 2 sheets of parchment into a ¼-inch- thick circle. Dip a round cookie cutter or a glass into flour and cut the dough into round shapes. Arrange on baking sheet. You do not need room for the cookies to spread, so you can fit a lot on the sheet. Re-roll dough to use it up. Place the filled cookie sheet in the fridge while rolling out the other half of the dough.


Bake the cookies until deeply browned, 13–15 minutes for a crisp shortbread, 11–13 minutes for a softer cookie. Remove from oven and immediately transfer to a wire rack.


To make the chocolate glaze if using, simply melt the chocolate over a double boiler, whisking until smooth. Dip one end of each cookie into the chocolate and return them to the wire rack to cool and for the chocolate to set.


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