Cheesy Jalapeño Shortbread

You might think of sweet, crumbly cookies when you think of shortbread, but they can be savory as well. Personally I have been a connoisseur of shortbread my whole life, so when I saw this recipe for cheesy jalapeño shortbread I knew this was going to be made in my kitchen ASAP. And, these piquant little drops of heaven did not disappoint.

This shortbread relies on the time-tested combination of jalapeño and cheese. Even before these went into the oven the aroma of the peppers and cheddar together had my interest. The freshness of the jalapeños is the perfect compliment to the rich, buttery shortbread and the cheese. For this recipe I used sharp (orange) cheddar but you can use white cheddar, pepper jack, Monterey jack, or Irish cheddar.



1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

8 tablespoons (1 stick) cold butter, cubed

2 cups grated cheddar or pepper jack cheese

1 egg, lightly beaten

2-3 fresh jalapeño peppers, finely minced



Combine flour and salt in a large bowl. Cut in butter using a pastry knife or two forks. Mixture will be dry and crumbly. Stir in beaten egg and then add cheese and jalapeño. Roll into a ball and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Heat oven to 400°F. Roll dough into 1” balls and place on greased or lined baking sheet spaced 2” apart. Press each cookie to flatten slightly using a flat-bottomed mug or jar.

Bake for 14-18 minutes or until shortbread is just beginning to turn golden brown. Allow to cool on pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to cool completely before serving.

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