Ghoraiba (غريبة) is a popular Levant butter cookie of a shortbread nature that is also very famous in Egypt.
Traditionally, it has only three ingredients: sugar, ghee, and flour, and topped with a nut of choice. Modern additions, which are optional, include a touch of vanilla and a pinch of salt.To help ensure the ultra smooth texture of the cookie, which literally melts in the mouth, I recommend using sifted powder sugar. The dough might need an hour’s stint in the refrigerator to enable shaping into balls, and then a pistachio kernel (or other nut of choice) is lightly pressed on the surface.
The cookies are baked until barely colored at all and should remain white. Make sure to let the cookies cool completely before removing from the baking tray onto the serving dish as they are delicate cookies.
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 cup ghee
3 cups flour
2 tsp vanilla
1 pinch salt
a few pistachio kernels
Whip the ghee and sifter powdered sugar until pale, fluffy, and white.
If using a stand mixer, change the attachment from the whisk to the triangle K beater, add the flour, salt, and vanilla.
Keep beating until a smooth dough forms that comes together when pressed.
Let chill at least an hour or up to overnight. When chilled, form into walnut-sized balls and place onto a baking tray.
Press a pistachio kernel or other nut onto the surface and bake in a preheated 320F oven for 20 minutes.
The cookies should be barely colored if at all. Let cool completely onto the baking tray. If you attempt to move the cookies while still warm, they will fall apart.
Can serve as is or with an additional sprinkle of powdered sugar.