Thandai Shortbread Cookies Dipped in White Chocolate with Pistachios and Rose Petals

This is my 1,000 post in six years – that’s right – 1,000 ! Since it is the holiday season I decided a new cookie would be a great way to remember this special occasion.

Something different from my gingerbread men, spritz  cookies (there are 7 versions) or Mom’s sugar cookies that appear on my Holiday Cookie Table. My Honey Orange Madeleine Santas are pretty cute too as well as my Christmas Oreo Cookies.

I have to admit that a “shrimps” recipe is waiting to be posted and it was a difficult decision as to which one would get the honor of being 1,000. A Chinese shrimp stir-fry is one of my favorite meals but because of the holiday I decided to go for a cookie – an Indian flavored cookie.

First, Thandai, or sardai,  is a sweet and cold Indian drink made from a milk base and traditionally served during the festival of Holi. The author, Amisha Gurbani, has used it in the form of these shortbread cookies instead of in a beverage. Her version is influenced by her Mumbai roots and is made up of 3 nuts; almonds, pistachios and cashews, many fragrant spices such as cardamom, star anise and then rose petals.


I subscribe to the Bake From Scratch Magazine and love all the baked goods and stories that appear in each issue. They have special editions such as this Holiday Cookies issue. One look and I knew I would find a special cookie, the problem would be deciding on which one.  If you’re looking for new and creative ideas for cookies this holiday season get yourself a copy, or better yet make this recipe!

The cookies I usually make are mainly some of America’s favorite holiday cookies. When I bought this magazine I was drawn to this one because I do love shortbread, they are dipped in chocolate and then sprinkled with a rose/pistachio mixture. I also was very interested in making the Thandai powder which provides the Indian twist to these cookies. Just look at the ingredients below and you will understand how heavenly this mix is.

Thandai Shortbread Cookies Dipped in White Chocolate with Pistachios and Rose Petals, Adapted

Thandai Powder:

  • 1/3 cup almonds
  • 1/4 cup pistachios
  • 1/4 cup cashews
  • 1/4 cup poppy seeds
  • 1/4 cup dried culinary rose petals
  • 20 black peppercorns
  • seeds from 8 cardamom pods, or you can use the seeds from a jar (see comment)
  • 1 cinnamon stick, crushed
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 2 tbsp. fennel seeds
  • 2 star anise
  • 1/2 tsp. ground fresh nutmeg

Stir together all the ingredients and working in batches, add the mixture to a coffee grinder. Blend until finely ground. As there were some pieces of nuts that did not grind totally I ran them through the grinder again. If need be I removed any as I did not want any “big” pieces in my cookies.

The nuts have oils and could become rancid so I chose to refrigerate the powder in a covered jar.  The author did not give any suggestions. You can make 2 batches of these cookies with this powder recipe.


  • 1-1/4 cups unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla
  • 2-1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp. Thandai Powder (from above)
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

Using your stand mixer beat the butter and sugar until creamy, 3 to 4 minutes; beat in vanilla.

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, Thandai Powder and salt. With mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture to the butter mixture, beating until combined. Turn out dough and divide in half. Shape into 2 disks and wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate for 2 hours. This is an excellent soft dough to work with. You can either refrigerate the dough for up to 1 week or 1 month in the freezer if desired.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Roll half of the dough to 1/4-inch thickness (no thinner) on a lightly floured surface. Use a 2-1/2-inch fluted round cutter, cut out your cookies and place on baking sheets.

Bake on the lower and middle racks of the oven until golden brown, about 15 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking. Let cool for 5 minutes. Remove and cool completely on wire racks.

I used only half of the dough and froze the rest so I used just the middle rack to bake my cookies. It only took 6 minutes in my oven, then I turned the pans and baked an additional 6 minutes. So 12 minutes for me – just be watchful as to how they are baking as you just want them to brown lightly around the edges.

White Chocolate:

  • 2 cups high-quality white chocolate morsels (I used Ghiradelli)
  • 2 tsp. coconut oil

I microwaved half of the recipe at a time as it was easier to work with a smaller amount. Microwave 1 cup chips plus 1 tsp. coconut oil at 30 second intervals. It took about a minute, then I stirred it well to get a smooth texture. Then when that was gone I  made another cup.

Pistachios and Rose Petals:

  • 3/4 cup pistachios, finely chopped (I put it through my nut chopper twice)
  • 1 tbsp. powdered dried rose petals (bought from Scents of Earth)
  • crushed rose petals with your fingers or a mortar and pestle

I changed this part of the recipe due to some confusion with an ingredient. First of all this recipe makes a lot, you could certainly cut the recipe in half and make more if you need it. Combine the pistachios and powdered dried rose petals. Crush some dried rose petals with your fingers or use a mortar and pestle and set them aside.


Place a rack on a parchment lined baking sheet. I prefer to drizzle the chocolate over the bottom 1/3 with a spoon versus dipping, letting any excess drip off.  Sprinkle the pistachio/rose powder mixture onto the chocolate, then add some dried, crushed rose petals. Shake off the excess and place on prepared pan. Freeze until chocolate is set, about 5 minutes. If chocolate begins to thicken while dipping cookies, microwave for 10 to 15 seconds to rewarm (that’s why I only make 1/2 the recipe at a time).

The best thing (besides being delicious) is these cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. These will be a rather elegant addition to my holiday table.  Roses and white chocolate will probably not surprise many people who know me.

Comment: The size of cardamom seeds can vary; whether from a jar or fresh from the pods. Adjust to your taste. I found there are about 12 seeds per pod and 10 pods = 1-1/2 tsp. ground cardamom. The seeds from a jar were twice as big as seeds from cardamom pods. See picture above… I happen to love cardamom so just adjust this spice to your taste – use more or less cardamom seeds.

Recipe by

Linking to Fiesta Friday #200.

The shortbread dough ingredients and my workhorse Kitchen-Aid:

Cookies cut out and ready for baking:

The bare cookies:

The chopped pistachios (left picture) and 1 tbsp. rose petal powder added (right picture):


Picture taken inside:

Pictures taken outside: 


37 thoughts on “Thandai Shortbread Cookies Dipped in White Chocolate with Pistachios and Rose Petals

  1. Wow, well done Judi – 1,000 posts! Good for you, congratulations! What a great way to celebrate with these decadent looking cookies. Where did you buy your rose petals from? I bet I wouldn’t be able to keep them around for too long 🙂 Congrats again, such a great accomplishment!


    • Thanks so much Loretta – hard to believe I’ve come this far with my blog. Thanks for celebrating with me and being a part of my blogging experience. I bought the rose petals back when I made a rose harissa spice mix in 2016. I didn’t note where I bought them but there are a number of choices through Amazon – they just need to be food grade and organic would be nice too. I did mention above where I bought my dried rose petal powder 🙂


  2. Congratulation on you 1000th post! With your detailed and accurate recipes, this is even more of an achievement, and the cookies you have here are a perfect example of that.
    The cookies are so beautiful. I love everything about them, from the nuts to the spices and the coating. This made me realize I haven’t baked with rose petals. Will order some soon! 🙂


    • Thanks so much for your compliments as they are so appreciated. I do try to give exact details and as much info as I can. As a matter of fact I am communicating with Bake From Scratch about the recipe as there were some problems with it that I worked out. They are contacting the author and I have not heard back – the recipe should be corrected as I had a few issues. I even sent them photos… I had a problem with a bread recipe from King Arthur Flour and they actually changed the recipe. Lavender and roses are two favorite flowers to work with 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Julie – 6 years and 1,000 posts. There are more recipes than that as I frequently will add “two ways” “seven ways” or give a slow cooking and a Weight Watcher recipe. Roses add color and a different dimension to recipes – lavender is another favorite flower and you definitely get additional flavor using those lovely buds 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Congratulations on your 1000 posts!! A great way of celebration with these cookies. Looking forward for many more amazing posts to come. Keep Inspiring us Judi. 😍


    • Thanks Sumith – this was a fun cookie to make and more than worthy of my blogging celebration. I had a few problems with the recipe but worked it out to my satisfaction. Just delicious with the Thandai powder, sweet chocolate, crunch of the pistachios and the additional color of rose petals 🙂


  4. Well first off, HUGE congratulations on your major milestone! I’ve been blogging that long but only have half the posts. But I have slowed WAY down in posting this past year or so. Second, those cookies are nothing short of amazing! A perfect celebration!


    • Thanks Kathryn – I had a lot to post in the beginning and now I am down to one, maybe two a week. With your taco food truck business I can see why you wouldn’t have time to post, especially the first year. The cookies were fun and certainly different for me to make!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Mollie – once I worked out all the kinks I ended up with a very tasty cookie. Enjoyed making my own Thandai powder with all those different spices. There is such a following of Indian bloggers on FF that I try to experiment with a recipe now and then. I still would prefer my “shrimps” in a stir-fry with rice any day over a “sweet” 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much Sheryl – hard to believe it’s been six years and posted so many recipes. The Thandai powder sets these shortbread cookies apart. Of course dipping in chocolate and sprinkling of pistachios and rose petals sure doesn’t hurt the appeal of these cookies.


  5. I love thandai, and this caught my eye immediately on FF! Love how it transforms from a festival drink to a cookie! I imagine this would be perfect for any time of the year. Some thandai recipes also use melon seeds as well. Thanks for sharing, Judi!


    • Thanks – it was fun to make. I have seen it made with different ingredients such as saffron or using anise seeds instead of star anise. I decided to make it just like the author’s recipe since it was my first time making it. I’m going to try the drink next since I have plenty of powder left.


  6. Wow..The recipe sounds so delicious. And the cookies look super classy. I wanna grab one right away through my screen!! ❤


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