Holiday baking can be stressful. Often times, you’re competing with self-proclaimed family and friend bakers when adding your dish to the pot luck spread. Luckily this recipe is foolproof (and taste really good). These shortbreads aren’t too assertive and are just salty enough to encourage guests to go back for thirds or fourths while sipping on their Sidecars. Go ahead, slap that self-proclaimed title next to your name on that business card.
Yield: 36 crackers Time: 35 m active, 1h 15m total
1 stick (1/4 lb) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
4 oz. good quality Stilton cheese
1 cup walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
2 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
Step 1 Place Stilton cheese in the freezer for 15 minutes, this makes incorporating and grating it much easier later on. Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat util smooth and fluffy. Add the salt, sugar, and pepper then mix into butter scraping down the sides periodically.
Step 2 Measure flour into a bowl. Take the stilton out of the freezer and with a cheese grater, grate into the flour. Once grated, gently mix the flour and cheese together making sure to coat the cheese shaving with flour.
Step 3 With the stand mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture to the butter. Mix just until a cohesive dough forms, you may need to add 1-2 tbsp of water to the mixture to have it come together, depending on how dry your cheese is. Do not over mix.
Step 4 Dump dough out onto a well floured work surface. work the dough into a log shape about an inch wide and 13 inches long. Tightly wrap in plastic wrap and let sit in the fridge for an hour, up to 24 hours.
Step 5 Preheat oven to 350 F. Take the chilled rested dough out of the fridge and place on a well floured surface. Using a sharp non-serrated knife, cut the log into 1/4-1/2 inch rounds and place on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper. Place in oven and cook for 22-24 minutes. Take out and let cool on a wire rack. Serve immediately or store in an air tight container for up to a week.