I have a weakness for French cheeses. This wasn’t always the case, in fact I used not like cheese very much. Being Mexican cheese is not something we eat often or much of. Contrary to the inaccurate impression many have about Mexican cuisine, you’ll find that in our authentic cookery cheese is using sparingly. Growing up my parent’s only bought a couple Mexican cheeses that we occasionally used for quesadillas or to top chilaquiles. So needless to say, when it came to cheese my experience was very limited.
My husband grew up loving cheese, and his favorite one is blue cheese. You can image the reaction someone, like me, with very limited experience has the first time smelling and seeing blue cheese. But being the brave and curious eater I am, I had to give it a taste. Much to his and my surprise I too fell in love with blue cheese. Fast forward all these years later and I now love eating many cheeses my husband isn’t too fond of.
Living in Paris only helped solidify my and his love of cheese. France, the land of 400 distinct cheese types, is a dream come true. There instead of a sweet or heavy cake for dessert you can enjoy a plateau de fromage or a plate of cheese. If you happen to be eating at a nice establishment the waiter will come by with a cart full of all sorts of cheeses to choose from for your plateau. If you love cheese it is a fun and delicious experience. My love of French cheeses became so grand that instead of holding my breath when passing our fromagerie I inhaled deeply to take in the ripe cheese smell.
In a house with two cheese lovers, cheese is always in our refrigerator. The options here aren’t as large as in France but there are still plenty to choose from, like this creamy goat cheese I used for these shortbreads. The other day I was craving not only cheese but also shortbreads, another one of my weaknesses. I thought why not combine the two and make goat cheese shortbreads. Since I was using goat cheese and therefore making savory shortbreads, I wanted to add a little more depth of flavour by using spicy pecans. Before I tell you how scrumptious they tasted, I’ll give you the recipe.
- 3 tbs Amelia’s Hot & Spicy Pecans
- ½ cup or 100 gm all purpose white flour
- large pinch of sugar
- pinch of salt
- 40 gm or 1.4 oz goat cheese
- spicy paprika
- 3 tbsp melted unsalted butter (if using salted butter omit salt above)
- Preheat oven to 180 c or 356f and line a cookie sheet with baking paper, set aside. Place pecans in a blender and pulse for a couple of seconds until they break up. Don’t overdo it, we don’t want them to be pulverized.
- Roll the goat cheese in some spicy paprika and set aside. In a large bowl mix together the flour, sugar, salt, and ground pecans until well combined. Next crumble the goat cheese into the flour mixture and stir to combine. Pour the melted butter into the bowl while stirring, until a crumbly mix is achieved. Gather the crumbly dough and place on floured surface. Flatten out to an even level and slice into even sized squares or use a cookie cutter to cutout desired shapes.
- Place on baking sheet bake in center of oven for 8-10 minutes. Check after 8 minutes and do not allow shortbreads to brown. Allow to cool completely before enjoying.
The shortbreads are crumbly, buttery, savory, spicy, a tad sweet, and have a slight tart flavour given by the goat cheese. To say they taste good is an understatement — they taste awesome! The only bad part is that the batch was small, we ate them in a couple of days. But these will definitely be something I make over and over again.
I hope you give them a try and love them as much as we did. If you’re not craving a cheesy spicy treat but rather a sweet one, try these Black Sesame Polvorones or Matcha Merunky Polvorones. (Polvoron is the Spanish word for shortbread.)