Last month I splurged on a Zahav pop up dinner in DC with my friend Mary. After all, the dinner, including the book, was less expensive than the trip to Philadelphia to the well known and hard-to-get-reservations restaurant.
The dinner was fantastic. The hummus was one of the smoothest I've ever had. I did my best not to lick the plate. The lamb was tender and served with fragrant rice. And then there was dessert. As soon as I put the tehina shortbread cookie in my mouth, my childhood memories rushed in. Growing up in Russia, I often ate halvah with tea and lemon. My parents still keep this tradition. These shortbread cookies, which melt in your mouth, taste exactly like halvah because both use tehina (tahini) as one of the key ingredients. I knew these cookies will be the first recipe I made from the cookbook.
Combine the butter and sugar in a stand mixer on medium speed or in a large bowl with a hand mixer and mix until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
I've eaten quite a few of these unassuming looking cookies and brought some to share to a few good friends, and even baked a batch to bring to Seattle last weekend when I flew to surprise my dad for his belated birthday. These were truly a hit!