I love shortbread. Like really love shortbread. Maybe because I grew up with my mom and grandma making it, or maybe because yes it's just that delicious. My mom has always made it at Christmas, and my grandma's shortbread is one everyone fights over (I still need to try out her recipe). Their shortbreads are quite different though, with my mom's being light, extremely crumbly and topped with half of a maraschino cherry, and my grandma's being covered in sugar and more sturdy. Both are yummy.
I was really curious to try out this recipe, wondering if it would be anything like shortbread since there's half of a banana in it. Impressively it was quite like shortbread in texture, but it didn't have a strong banana taste. There was way too much nutmeg, so I recommend halving it which is reflected in the recipe below. And it was easy to roll out (a huge plus in my books).
I really loved trying this recipe out, but I doubt I'll make it again because the flavour just didn't do it for me (maybe it was the extreme nutmeg). So why am I posting it? Well it's worth trying if you're an adventurous shortbread lover, or just looking for something different. And if you're fancy, you can add dried banana chips, walnut halves and/or maple icing to these. The Better Homes & Gardens Christmas Cookies magazine has a few different shortbread recipes, and I can't wait to try out the other ones - carrot cake, peanut butter candy, and strawberry.
Other cookies I've made:
Earl Grey Tea or Matcha Shortbread
Chocolate Oatmeal Coconut Cookies
Russian Tea Cakes (Mexican Wedding Cake Cookies)
Strawberry Shortbread Cookie Bark
Banana Nut Shortbread
Adapted from Better Homes & Gardens Christmas Cookies 2007
Makes about 36
1 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup mashed ripe banana (1/2 medium banana)
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2/3 cup finely chopped toasted walnuts
Beat butter, banana, and vanilla in a mixing bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours or freeze about 20 minutes until firm.
Preheat the oven to 300F. Combine flour, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl. Cut in butter mixture using a pastry blender until mixture resembles fine crumbs and starts to cling together. Add chopped nuts. Knead dough until smooth; form dough into a ball. Divide dough in half.
Roll each dough portion into an 8 inch x 6 inch rectangle on a lightly floured surface. Cut each rectangle into sixteen 2 x 1 1/2-inch rectangles. Place rectangles 1 inch apart on prepared cookie sheets.
Bake in preheated oven about 30 minutes or just until bottoms begin to brown. Transfer cookies to wire racks and let cool.