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by devourslowly

Rupert shifted uncomfortably in his seat. “Oh, I should have thought that’s a bit – how shall we put it? – extreme. There’s all the difference in the world between a healthy degree of caution and undue scepticism. No, I have a completely open mind. Show me a yeti and I’ll believe in him.”

He was rather pleased with this last statement. Show me a yeti and I’ll believe in him. It had a resounding ring to it, and one might say it about so many things that were dubious or frankly non-existent. Show me a UFO and I’ll believe in them. Exactly. Belief required proof, and what better proof than that provided by one’s own eyes?

“I shall,” said Errol Greatorex.

Rupert was brought back from his contemplation of proof. “Shall what?” he asked.

“I shall show you a yeti,” said Errol Greatorex. “You asked me to show you a yeti. I said that I shall.”

Alexander McCall Smith, The Dog Who Came In From The Cold

pistachio shortbread @ Cinnamon Spoon

Making cookies make me very nervous.

I like my cookies firm and crumbly to the bite – a state that is surprisingly hard to achieve in the humid Auckland heat.  It is frustrating really.  I love baking.  I love doing the things I love doing well.  whilst cakes pretty much come as second nature for me these days, cookies are quite another story.

I have tried everything.  Following recipes closely, following recipes not so closely, altering quality of ingredients, altering the baking temperature, praying to God and offering to do a couple of good deeds in return… I have tried absolutely everything.  I even read up on the science behind baking.  White sugar is hydrophobic so the resultant cookies are hardier/crunchier.  Brown sugar is hydrophilic so should only be used if you want your cookies soft.  Above all the thermal decomposition process which raises cookie doughs by releasing carbon dioxide is NOT to be messed with.

Still, after all that effort, cookies are still more of a hit and miss for me.

Last night, I struck gold.

Randomly invigorated and inspired by MasterChef New Zealand playing on TV, I decided to give shortbread a go.  I picked up the recipe for pistachio shortbread from Manna from Heaven and got to work.  With some leftover pistachio, almond and orange mixtures and a handful of fresh pistachio nut and absolutely no ground almond – I set about adapting the recipe to create my own shortbread.  The entire process was made all the more easier with my trusted engine red KitchenAid.  By the way, I am dead sure the red KitchenAids work a lot better than the other colours.  Make sure it is the hoot hoot engine red and not other nonsense.

The result?  Well, lets just say I have been eating a lot of shortbread rounds and hiding the others in my secret cookie tin.  🙂  One downside though, the rounds are so butter-ladden I can’t actually eat a lot at once!  I definitely have to play with the ratios a bit more before including these gemmies on the Cinnamon Spoon recipe!

So excited 🙂