Honey, gorgonzola and pecan shortbread cookies
So, I think I’ve discovered the ultimate solution for people who can’t decide whether to order the cheese plate or dessert after dinner — combine ‘em.
This might sound a little crazy to some of you out in the interwebs, but cheese and cookies are actually a brilliant combo. Inspired by the Napa Valley Cookie Co., which is always hawking their gorgonzola cream creation at food festivals, I sweetened up a stinky cheese and paired it with a crunchy cookie.
The cookies here, basically a sweet brown sugar shortbread, somehow compliment the stinkiness of the gorgonzola cream beautifully. If you don’t love stinky cheese, this isn’t for you. But if you’re more of a savory person than a sweet one, then these might be the ultimate compromise.
Finding the perfect cookie and cream combo wasn’t easy. I tested and retested this recipes a dozen times, and I’m sure there’s still a better match out there. But for now, this is what we’ve got and I’ve been devouring them non stop, which isn’t doing me any favors for the upcoming bikini season.
Let me know if you give them a try, I’d love to hear any feedback!
The dough can get a little sticky when rolling out, so use as much extra flour as you need. Also, you can finely chop the pecans by hand our pulse them in a spice grinder.
MAKES ABOUT 2 DOZEN COOKIES
For the gorgonzola cream
1 cup cream cheese
¾ cup crumbled sweet gorgonzola (or any other favorite blue cheese)
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoons honey
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
For the cookies
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¾ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup whole wheat flour
¼ cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped
Start by making the gorgonzola cream. Place the cream cheese in a medium-size bowl. Place the bowl in the microwave and cook for one minute on high to soften.
In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the heavy cream, gorgonzola, honey and black pepper just until cheese begins to melt. Be careful not to bring it to a boil.
One melted, remove from the cream and cheese from the heat and add it to the softened cream cheese. Using a whisk or stand mixer with the whisk attachment beat it all together until smooth. Cover and set it in the refrigerator while you prepare the cookies.
Heat the oven to 350°F. In a large bowl, whisk together the butter, brown sugar, salt, and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Stir in the two flours and pecans and mix until combined.
Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out onto a floured surface or a piece of parchment paper. Roll into as close to a rectangle shape as you can muster until it’s about ¼-inch thick. The thinner, the crispier your cookies will be. Cut out cookies with a cookie cutter and place them on a cookie sheet lined with parchment.
Transfer the cookies to the oven and bake until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes.
Remove the pan from the oven and let cool completely. Then, either top with the gorgonzola cream or make little cookie sandwiches, like I did. But only make as many as you’ll eat. They get soft after a while, so spread the gorgonzola cream as you go.