A couple of years ago when Ted and I went to California as winners of the Raisin Bread Contest, we visited a very well known bakery in Yountville, CA called Bouchon. It turns out there is a book of recipes for the delicious sweet treats, scaled down for the home cook. Chef’s Sebastien Rouxel at The French Laundry and Matthew McDonald, Bouchon’s head baker offer the best of their experience in the recipes.
As I opened the book and began reading, even before getting to the main chapters, Thomas Keller, the books author, offers a favorite recipe from his childhood, dedicated to his mom. It also happens to be one of my favorite cookies. Easy to make, light, delicate and sweet.
- 1 3/4 cups + 1 1/2 tsp. All purpose flour
- 3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
- 6 oz (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
- *1 tsp pure vanilla extract (This was my own addition)
- 3/4 + 1 3/4 tsp confectioners sugar, plus more for dusting after cooled.
Preheat the oven to 350 F or 325 F convection. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Toss the flour with the pecans.
Put the butter in a separate bowl and beat with a mixer until smooth. Add the vanilla (if using) and powdered sugar. Mix for 2 minutes, until fluffy. Scrape down the sides and add the flour mixture on low speed, mixing for about 30 seconds, until just combined.
Divide the dough into 1 1/2 TBS portions. Roll into balls and place 1 1/2 inch apart on baking sheet. Press down slightly to flatten.
Bake for 15 – 18 minutes in convection or 20 – 25 minutes standard oven (350F).
Allow to cool and sprinkle with additional sugar if desired.
Are you getting ready for holiday baking? What is one recipe you look forward to baking every year?