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The Lightest Pistachio Biscuits

Makes 24 biscuits

© by Ola O. Smit

These are by Gloria Ford, my husband’s cousin, a talented chef and maker of the most ethereal biscuits imaginable (her secret is the rice flour). When she made a batch for a family gathering, I know I wasn’t the only one who asked for the recipe. They are that good! If you want to experiment with spicing, this is the perfect biscuit to do it with, so I have listed a myriad of spice switch ideas.


  • Shelled Pistachios 60 g
  • Unsalted Butter 125 g, softened
  • Castor Sugar 55 g, plus more for dusting
  • Green Cardamom Pods 4, seeds ground
  • Rice Flour 55 g
  • Plain Flour 115 g
  • Fine Sea Salt a pinch

Cook It

  1. Use a food processor or bag and rolling pin to bash the pistachios, aiming for mainly ground with some larger bits for texture.
  2. In a stand mixer, or with a wooden spoon and a strong arm, cream together the butter, sugar, and cardamom until light and pale. Gently work in both flours and salt just until it comes together. Then mix in the pistachios.
  3. Tip the dough onto a piece of baking parchment and shape it into a triangular prism (think Toblerone box). Wrap in the parchment and chill in the fridge.
  4. Heat the oven to 350˚F. Line a baking sheet with baking parchment.
  5. Slice the chilled dough into 1/4-inch-thick triangles and spread out on the baking sheet. Cook for 15 minutes.
  6. Dust with a sprinkling of sugar while hot from the oven. After a couple of minutes, transfer to a rack to finish cooling.

Spice Switch

In place of the cardamom, you could try any of the following:

  • 1 tsp toasted cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp speculaas
  • 3/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • Seeds scraped from 1 vanilla pod
  • 2 tsp ground jasmine tea
  • 2 tsp ground rose tea
  • Pinch of ground saffron, infused in 1 Tbs warm milk
  • 1 Tbs fresh lavender flowers, finely chopped
Recipe excerpted from A Whisper of Cardamom: 80 Sweetly Spiced Recipes to Fall in Love With © 2024 by Eleanor Ford. Photography © 2024 by Ola O. Smit. With permission of Apollo Publishers.