Shortbread Cookies (Ghorayeba)

Shortbread Cookies (Ghorayeba)

Prep. 20 mins
Cooking 15 mins
Serving 4
Middle Eastern

INGREDIENTS Measurements


1 cup soft butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

  Flavor Options

2 teaspoons instant coffee
2 teaspoons strawberry or mint syrup

  Garnish Options

Whole nuts, coarsely chopped pistachios, coffee beans, or chocolate chips, for topping
Cocoa powder or ground cinnamon, for sprinkling
Melted dark and/or white chocolate, for drizzling
Date Paste, for filling



  • Preheat oven to 170˚C (350˚F).
  • In bowl of electric mixer, cream butter with powdered sugar and vanilla on medium speed. Mix flour with baking soda and beat into butter mixture on low speed. Add coffee or syrup and beat until combined. (Or, divide dough and add different flavoring to each one.) Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Shape dough into walnut-size balls and place, well apart, on a baking sheet. If topping with nuts, lightly press thumb into center of each ball and top with one whole nut.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, until set but not browned.
  • Let cool, then arrange on serving plate. If desired, sprinkle with cocoa powder or cinnamon, or drizzle with melted chocolate before serving.

  Shaping variations

  • Roll dough into a cylinder. Cut diagonally into slices, then drag the tines of a fork over the top to decorate. Bake, let cool, then drizzle with chocolate.
  • Shape dough into walnut-size balls. Press thumb into balls to make cups. Fill cups with smaller balls of date filling. Mold dough over filling, pressing seams to seal. Roll into date-shaped fingers. Roll in ground pistachios, then bake.

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