Thursday, December 23, 2010

Pistachio Cookies and Merry Christmas

School holidays have started here. That makes me little busier these days as I have to keep a restless toddler occupied with something or the other thing. I always look out for simple chores which should excite her to try out and do with less effort. Cooking is a great way to engage a child particularly in these long holidays. Now don’t take me wrong with that, I mean some easy cooking like assembling a Healfy Salad  or making Simple Mango Lassi . Or in this case may be trying out a little bit of photography for a change. Below what you see is her first try for food photography.

My DD has this inner curiosity to try out things which she sees her mamma doing regularly. The other day she was trying to make round rotis with some left-over atta/ flour dough and rolling pin. And when things were not going the way she wished them, I mean rotis and that too round, she started to fuss over.
Don’t know why kids have this fascination for being a grown-up. I tell her sometimes “Arey baba, ekto dhirey-dhirey boro ho, amar kaaj eto tara-tari kom korish na” (meaning Grow up slowly) to that she gives me a smiling face, some words understood and some aren’t.

We both started to make these pistachios cookies together; she helped me in shelling the roasted pistachios which I do think is a very tedious chore. And then she helped in folding the dough for cookies also. She was curious and helping me out till then , but when we started to cut out shapes her initial euphoria subsided quickly when she was dropping the cut-out of cookies on kitchen floor but not on baking tray.
And then she told me” Can I watch cartoons now?” This may be her way of telling me mamma I am done with these cookies cutting and baking bussiness.Now let me please do things which I do regularly and with little effort.

Well Kids will be kids. But then we also want it that way. Aren’t we? For a mother her children will be her kids forever even if they become grown-ups having their own children.

To the recipe now

These cookies are improvised version of these Pistachio Lemon Biscotti .I  just thought of  some minor additions of amount of butter will give the right crunchy texture. Generally I chop pistachios for the biscotti recipe, but this time I crushed them with the rolling pin. That gave a correct mixture of some big chunks and some powdered pistachios as well which further gave a nice nutty flavor to these pistachios cookies. You can easily replace pistachios with walnuts, almonds or cashews for that matter as per your preference. But the only requirement is that nuts should be toasted /roasted well before.

Pistachios Cookies/ Pista Biscuit

Recipe requirements
About 1 cup of all purpose flour +2 tbs of flour
1 egg
¼ cup of sugar
½ cup of butter
¾ tsp of baking powder
1 tbs of fresh lemon juice
1 tsp of grated lemon zest
1cup of crushed roasted pistachios

Measure about 1 cup of all purpose flour. Tap it gently and press it with a spoon for correct measurement and then run over a knife over the measuring cup discarding extra flour.
Add in the baking powder. Add in crushed pistachios also.

In a separate bowl, cream together butter and sugar. It would be better if you bring the butter to room temperature. Just take the butter out of the fridge prior of making these cookies.

Now here two types of butter are available –salted butter and unsalted butter. I have no preference for a particular type of butter. But if I am making /baking with salted butter I prefer not to add further salt in my recipes. In India I presume salt is already added to butter so check out while making these cookies or for that matter any cake, cookie or biscotti.

Now add one egg. Again I would repeat, take the egg out of the fridge prior of making these cookies and let it come at least somewhat near to room temperature.

Now slowly start mixing the egg, lemon juice and grated lemon zest to the butter+sugar mixture.

Its time to mix the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients in batches. Slowly start mixing about 3-4 tbs of flour mixture to the butter+sugar mixture.You may need some more flour at this stage to hold up the dough. Add in the extra 2-3 tbs of flour to this dough.

When all the flour is mixed up well, refrigerate the cookie dough for at least 1 hr. This way it would be easy to manage and cut the dough into various shape.

Line up a cookie sheet or baking tray with foil.

Preheat an oven (fan assisted oven) at 165 deg C or 325 deg F.

Divide the dough into four equal parts. While working with one part, refrigerate the other three parts.

Roll out a small circle of about half inch thickness dusting generously with some more flour and cut shapes of your choice with different cookie cutters.

Transfer these to the baking tray and bake for 18-20 mints depending on your oven.
When the sides are turning little golden or just start to show tinge of brown, take them out and cool.

Do the other batches this way. Store in air-tight containers. Stays fresh for 1 week.


For retaining the crunchy texture and freshness of cookies, store them in layers of grease paper or tissue papers. This way these cookies remain fresh and crunchy even after 1 week.
This helps if you are sending these as Christmas goodies back home or to a friend in other cities.

You can easily replace pistachios with walnuts or almonds or cashews. But make sure nuts are toasted or roasted.

Happy Cooking Friends and Wish you a very Happy Christmas.


  1. Dear Jayashree
    Next time Delhi ele baniye Khao-abo...tikkas and Kebabs..
    Darun cookies..aj kal kichhutei baking Korte ichhe karena..janina keno..hoeto Mey-ra BaDo hoe gechhe, Tai..
    26th Kolkata jachhi anek din par...Tar par jabo Santiniketan (sosur BaDi) ar Sundarbon (bagh-er BaDi) ha ha
    Sabai ke amader Nabo Barsher subhechha roilo, Bhalo theko

  2. Merry Christmas to you and family!

    Pretty and elegant cookies..

  3. Cookies look perfect,..;-)
    wish u and your family merry christmas

  4. Jaya,
    The cookies look so lovely and tasty!And it was nice to know that your little one helped you churn them out:)Parle haath bariye koyekta niye nitam...etotai shundor hoechhe chhobigulo!Wish you a Merry Christmas and lovely Holidays ahead:)

  5. Ushnish da,
    nischoyi!! jaag bhalo besh ghore ashon dui to hi darun jaiga.aapnader ke O onek subecha noton barsher..

    thanks a ton ..wish you the same:-)..

    wish you same for you and your lovely family ..

    khob bhalo laglo tumake eyikhane kicho likhte..noton barsher onek-2 shubecha and bhalobhasa nebe..

    Enjoy the festive season and holidays everybody..hugs and smiles

  6. Lovely cookies Jaya...great for Christmas. Wish you a Happy Christmas & a wonderful New Year!

  7. Merry christmas and a happy new year to you and family. Delicious looking cookies.

  8. So great that you were able to bond with your daughter over the food photography and cooking in the kitchen! Hope you had a Merry Christmas!

  9. Happy Holidays..
    Cookies Looks so perfect and yummy..nice clicks too

  10. Indranee,
    Good to see you here after along time I guess..

    warm welcome and thanks for coming by..

    hi! and yeah we were having some great time hanging with each other in kitchen..

    thanks for coming..

    hugs and smiles


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