Tahini-Cardamom Shortbreads with Pistachios

Recipe Development and Food Styling by Ben Mims / Photography and Styling by Mason + Dixon

Tahini is a natural match with shortbread because its slight drying effect produces a crumbly texture in baked goods, a boon to shortbread. Cookbook author Ben Mims’ version of shortbread adds buttery pistachios for color and crunch. A thick coating of confectioners’ sugar sprinkled as soon as the cookies come out of the oven melds to the top, creating a snow-white, sweet layer to the nutty-toasty cookies. For more Tahini baked goods from Ben, get our Sept/Oct Issue here. 

Tahini-Cardamom Shortbreads with Pistachios
Makes 30
  • ⅔ cup (133 grams) granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon (1.5 grams) kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 cup (227 grams) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup (64 grams) tahini
  • 3 cups (375 grams) all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup (38 grams) roughly chopped pistachios
  • ½ cup (60 grams) confectioners’ sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 325°F (170°C). Line a 13x9-inch baking pan with parchment paper, letting excess extend over sides of pan.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, stir together granulated sugar, salt, and cardamom. With mixer on medium speed, add butter and tahini, beating until smooth, about 1 minute. Add flour, beating just until combined and crumbly. Reduce mixer speed to low, and beat for 10 minutes. (This amount of time helps develop some gluten, which you want to create the characteristic brittle texture of the shortbread.) Beat in pistachios.
  3. Transfer dough to prepared pan, pressing into bottom. Using a paring knife, score dough into 2¼x1½-inch rectangles. Prick dough all over with a fork, being careful to stay within lines of rectangles.
  4. Bake until very light golden brown at the edges, about 40 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack, and cut along scored lines to separate rectangles while dough is still hot. Immediately dust top with confectioners’ sugar. Let cool completely in pan. Using excess parchment as handles, gently remove from pan, and break apart to serve.


Previous articleLemon Semolina Cake
Next articleCandied Cherry, Date, and Pistachio Biscotti


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Rate this recipe:  

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.