Nankhatai which is basically the Indian equivalent of the shortcrust bread, is a magical biscuit associated with so many of our childhood memories. This one is my Grandma’s recipe and every time I bake it, I fall in love with it a bit more!
Nankhatai is the Indian equivalent to the shortcrust biscuit. I have always been in love with them, the round thick ones you get at the bakeries round the corner. The medium sized ones typically made at home with a kaju or badaam in the middle, or the slightly charred ones found on the roadside mobile makeshift ovens in Delhi.
Then there were these my grandma used to make. Thin almost like a shortcrust cookie, sprinkled with flakes of almonds and pista that she would painstakingly chop. These nankhatais have always been my favorite. She used to say these are the ones that were more popular in the Sindh region. She learnt it from a neighbor who migrated from there. Since then this is what she made and not the ones that her mother taught her and now this is what I make too.
The weather in Bangalore, these days is made for endless cups of adrak chai and these cookies (nankhatais). I might crib about clothes not drying and my house turning into a dhobhi ghat, but the fact is that I am totally enjoying the weather and the baking and the other stuff it is bringing along with it. These baked nankhatais were made last week and they are already over. If you bake them, I assure they won’t last very long.
Before jumping to the recipe, here are some recipes from my Grandma’s kitchen!
My grandma's Nankhatai Recipe
- 1 cup Maida
- 1/4 cup Besan
- 1 tbsp Rawa Chiroti
- 1/2 cup Ghee
- 1/2 cup Castor Sugar
- pinch Nutmeg powder a
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 tsp Dahi
- 1 tbsp Milk
- 2 tbsps Almond flakes
- 2 tbsps Pistachio flakes
- Preheat the oven to 180C.
- In a large bowl, cream ghee and castor sugar together (the cookies are not very high on sugar and if you like them sweet, please increase the sugar to 2/3 cup instead of 1/2 cup) till light, soft and fluffy.
- Add dahi and milk to the creamed mixture and stir till just mixed.
- Sift together maida, besan, sooji, caradamom powder, nutmeg powder and baking powder.
- Slowly mix the flour mixture to creamed ghee and sugar. Don't knead, just bring them together. If the batter feels very dry, add a spoon of milk or so.
- After it has come together as a dough, make 20 balls out of it. Press each ball with palm and then use a weight to flatten it thin. I also like to use a cookie cutter to cut it as like smooth edges.
- Sprinkle the cookie with almond and pistachio flakes and press them gently on the cookie
- Line the cookie on a sheet and bake in a pre heated oven for 10-15 mins till set.
- Cool completely and enjoy with endless cups of chai and conversations. It can be stored in an airtight container for 2 weeks but I bet it won't last so long.