Pistachio & Pandan Elephant Shortbread

For the summer Patreon boxes, part of the theme is ‘wild grasses.’ Now, I didn’t actually come up with any grass-tasting cookies, but I thought this was pretty darn close. Pandan’s flavor is strong, described as grassy with hints of rose, almond, and vanilla, verging on coconut. And elephants are quite wild. 🙂 These little cookies are lovely with a cup of tea.


Pistachio & Pandan Elephant Shortbread


3/4 pound unsalted butter at room temperature
1 c. sugar
2 scraped vanilla beans or 2 t. pure vanilla extract
3/4 t. salt
1-3 T pandan extract paste (to desired color and flavor)
3 1/2 cups flour

1/2 c. pistachio, chopped fine

1. Preheat the oven to 350F.

2. Cream together the butter and sugar; add the vanilla, salt, and pandan extract. Then add flour and mix on low until dough forms. Stir in chopped pistachio.

3. Turn out dough onto floured board. (If it’s not coming together into a dough, the heat of your hands will help.) Firmly pat flat (to desired cookie height, usually about 1/2 inch). If using cookie cutters, cut out shapes, place on parchment-covered baking sheet, and chill for 15 minutes (to help hold shape).

NOTE: Can be kept chilled at this point for several days, covered in plastic wrap, and then rolled, cut, and baked fresh.

Alternately, press into baking pan or shortbread mold, prick with fork. (You can also cut shapes out after baking — shortbread is very forgiving that way — but then the individual cookie edges won’t be browned.)

3. Remove from fridge and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the edges begin to brown, then remove to wire rack to cool.

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