Mountain Restaurant's walnut praline shortbread

Mountain Restaurant's walnut praline shortbread is shown. Recipe: Walnut praline shortbread cookies (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)



My husband and I really enjoy Mountain Restaurant, which we find to be one of Southern California's hidden jewels. Among their delicious offerings is a walnut praline shortbread cookie. Can you get us the recipe?

John and Ginny Robinson

San Diego

Dear John and Ginny: Mountain Restaurant was happy to share its recipe, which we've adapted below. It combines rich, crumbly walnut shortbread with a sweet honeyed praline and chopped walnuts. The recipe makes about three dozen cookies, which is a good thing because it's hard to eat just one.

Mountain Restaurant's walnut praline shortbread

Total time: 35 minutes, plus chilling

Servings: About 3 dozen cookies

Note: Adapted from Mountain Restaurant in Idyllwild. This recipe requires the use of a food processor and mini-muffin pans (the muffin molds should be about 1 3/4 inches in diameter at the base).

Praline

2 tablespoons light brown sugar

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup honey

1/4 cup heavy cream

In a small, heavy-bottom saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the brown sugar, sugar, butter and honey. Stir until the mixture comes to a boil, then whisk constantly for 3 minutes. Remove from heat, cool for 1 minute, then slowly whisk in the cream. This makes about one-half cup praline base.

Shortbread and assembly

2 cups (8.5 ounces) flour

2 cups (7.3 ounces) walnuts

1/2 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon salt