Naankhatai: Indian Shortbread Cookies
Most of the days my son skips snack at school - either he wasn't hungry then or he just did not like his choice that day. By the time he gets home around 4:30pm, he is very hungry and I try to give him something wholesome. He has to have a banana then and then some yogurt, or a muffin or couple of slices of cheese. But sometimes he asks for cookies. And he absolutely loves shortbread cookies! While the husband and I are trying to cut down on the sugar, that should not mean that I deprive the sonny boy of mine! I like to bake things at home since that way I have control over the quality of the ingredients. So today after a long day (of shopping), I decided to bake some Naankhatai - the Indian Shortbread Cookie for him to snack on after school. One bite of these eggless cookies and you are bound to fall in love with these... buttery crumbly melt-in-your-mouth cookies with a hint of cardamom in it! I had been eyeing this recipe on Arundhuti's blog - My Saffron Kitchen for a while now and just got around to making it. I stuck to her recipe for the better part but made a few changes here and there.
Pic taken at night.
Ingredients: (This recipe yields about 20 cookies)
- All Purpose Flour - 1 Cup
- Besan or Gram Flour - 1/2 Cup
- Butter - 1 stick/8 tbsp/1/2 Cup at room temperature
- Sugar - 1/3 Cup
- Baking Soda - 1/4 tsp
- Baking Powder - 1/2 tsp
- Salt - A fat finch
- Green Cardamom Powder - 3/4 tsp
- Milk - 1 tbsp, if required
- Pistachios - 2, finely chopped for garnishing (or nuts of your choice)
Preheat oven to 350F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and keep aside. In a large bowl, cream together the sugar and butter. In a separate bowl, sift together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt and green cardamom powder. Now add the flour mix to the creamed sugar and butter and using the palms of your hand knead into a dough. At this point, add the 1 tbsp milk if required to form the dough. Now make two logs of dough and cling wrap those individually and stick both in the fridge for 20 to 30 minutes.
I just find it easier to cut the refrigerated cookie dough. Alternately, you can shape the cookie dough into small balls and flatten them slightly using the palms of your hand. Sprinkle the chopped pistachios in the middle and press those down ever-so gently!
Bake for 16-18 minutes till these turn slightly golden brown and cracks a little. Cool on a wire rack and store these in an airtight container.
Note: You can make the cookies in any shape you want to!