Macadamia Shortbread with Fruit and Banana Cream

  • Servings: 10

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  • 2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 cup unsalted macadamia nuts, preferably roasted, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons cold milk
fruit compote
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup dry sherry
  • 1 whole clove
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 3 medium plums, cut into small wedges
  • 1 large mango, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 2 cups fresh raspberries
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries
banana cream
  • 1 large banana, cut into 1/2 -inch dice
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 11/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

How to make this recipe

  1. In a large bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, rice flour and sugar. Using a pastry cutter or 2 knives, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the macadamia nuts, vanilla and almond extracts and milk and stir just until a dough begins to form; do not overwork the dough. Form two-thirds of the dough into a 9-inch disk and shape the remaining piece into a 7-inch log. Wrap each piece in plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour or for up to 2 days.

  2. Preheat the oven to 400°. Set the disk of dough on a lightly floured baking sheet and let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes to soften slightly. Form the log of dough into 3/4-inch balls and gently press the dough balls around the edge of the top of the shortbread. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until golden brown.

  3. In a large saucepan, combine the water, sugar, sherry, clove and cinnamon stick. Bring to a boil over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves completely. Remove the clove and cinnamon stick and add the plums and mango. Simmer over moderate heat until the fruit is barely tender, about 5 minutes. Add the berries and simmer for 3 minutes longer. Transfer the compote to a bowl to cool slightly.

  4. Heat a nonstick skillet. Add the banana and sugar and stir over moderate heat until the sugar melts and caramelizes about 3 minutes. Let cool completely. Transfer the caramelized banana to a blender. Add the cream, molasses, honey and cinnamon and blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl.

  5. To serve, cut the shortbread into 10 wedges with a serrated knife. Spoon the fruit compote into 10 shallow bowls and top with a wedge of shortbread and a dollop of banana cream.

Make Ahead

The baked shortbread can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days; rewarm in a 325° oven just before serving. The fruit compote can stand at room temperature for up to 6 hours.

Contributed By Published December 1997

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