Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Basil Parmesan Shortbread Triangles

My fellow Michigan Lady Food Bloggers and I are participating in a Spice Rack Challenge: each of us is posting a recipe using the month's featured ingredient, then there will be a round-up of all the fabulousness at Mother's Kitchen on July 20.

The star of the show this month is basil, that gorgeous, fragrant, flavorful, indispensable gift from the garden gods. And what did I make to contribute to the cause of showing off this herb's charms?

I didn't want to make pesto, no matter how wonderful it is; that was too predictable. I considered a Thai beef stir fry, but never quite got around to making it.

And then I had a vision of brilliance after someone told me that Bon Appetit had recently showcased a recipe for sweet shortbread cookies featuring basil and mint.

I veered off that path a bit and made some savory shortbread instead: Basil Parmesan Shortbread Triangles.

I have several exceptionally healthy and hearty basil plants near my front steps, so the prime ingredient was readily available. Some other pantry staples like flour and butter were also ready for this mission; and I even managed to use up some Kraft parmesan cheese -- yes, that stuff in the green can! -- that was loitering in my refrigerator. Its powdery consistency was actually perfect for mixing into the batter, acting in much the same way that the flour did for structure and consistency.

These shortbread triangles are perfect with a salad or a light soup, or even cut into smaller portions and served as hors d'oeuvres. They're kindred spirits to garlic bread, but unique and distinctive, rich and addictive.

Basil Parmesan Shortbread Triangles

2-1/4 cups unbleached flour
1/4 cup finely grated parmesan
pinch of kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
8 large basil leaves, finely chopped
1 cup butter, softened
1 egg

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9" glass pie pan.

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, parmesan, salt, pepper, and basil. Stir in butter until mixture is crumbly. Stir in egg. Place mixture into the prepared pie pan. Score into 8 or 12 portions. Using a fork, press a decorative pattern into the outer edge of each portion (if desired).

Bake for 30-35 minutes until lightly golden around the edges. Score again. Let cool, then cut and serve.


Leanne said...

Ooooo . . . This sounds PERFECT (especially since I realized our hearty basil plants need some pickin'!) Katie is allergic to almonds - do you think increasing the flour would be ok inplace of the nut? I am loving this!!!!!

Yenta Mary said...

Substituting flour for the almonds would be just fine ... :)

Cranberry Morning said...

No kidding? Basil and parmesan shortbread? I've got to try this! I have the parmesan and my basil plant looks gorgeous right now, begging to be used for something delicious!

Jenn said...

Girl.. you had me at basil parmesan!! Oh YUM! I wish I had some of these right now... too bad I just used up all my basil! Gonna have to pick some more up this weekend I think!

Andrea the Kitchen Witch said...

Oh Mary, you are a bad bad woman indeed! Why??? Well cause I'm about to knock my 4 yr old out of the way to run into the kitchen to make these. I think they'd be the PERFECT breakfast!! Yum. Yum. YUM!!! Awesome use of the green can, I too have an offending can of it in the fridge that I should use up. See??? That kid needs to get out of my way so I can make this! I'll let her have one, too :)

Candace said...

I love the savory shortbread, Mary! Oh my! Sometimes you just can't beat the parmesan in the can. The consistency is just perfect for some applications. Thanks for sharing your recipe. I've got to try this. Have a beautiful Wednesday!

Yenta Mary said...

I ate a fried egg with the last shortbread today, and it was an absolutely stellar breakfast!

Cat Chat With Caren And Cody said...

I hesitated to read this because when I saw the title I knew my mouth was going to start watering. OMG these look DELICIOUS!!!

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