Makes about 40 cookies.
You will need:
- 225g (8oz) butter, softened
- 125g (4½oz) icing sugar
- 275g (10oz) flour
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 teaspoons ground cardamom, see my Tip, above left
- 1 teaspoon orange zest, finely grated
- Pinch of salt
- 200g (7oz) chopped pecans or sugar crystals/nibs – (coloured, if you like, available in some speciality food shops) (optional)
Put the softened butter in a bowl and beat until it is soft. Add in half of the icing sugar and continue to beat, then add in the other half. Keep beating until it is all incorporated. Next, add in the flour, the beaten egg, the ground cardamom, the finely grated orange zest and the salt, then continue to beat until everything is well combined.
Roll the dough out into a log shape approximately 4cm (1½in) wide and about 35cm (14in) long.
Roll the dough in the chopped pecans or the sugar crystals/nibs, whichever you’re using, if you’re using them, then transfer the dough to a large piece of parchment paper or cling film and roll it to cover it. If you have used pecan nuts or sugar crystals/nibs, press them in to the sides of the dough.
Put the dough in the fridge for a few hours or leave it in it overnight.
When you want to cook some, or all, of the cookies, cut the dough into ½-¾cm slices then lay them flat on a parchment-lined tray. Cook in an oven preheated to 180°C, 350°F, Gas 4 for about 15-24 minutes (the cooking time will vary, according to thickness), or until a light golden colour. Carefully lift on to a cooling rack to cool completely.