Light and flaky Nankhatai recipe that is flavored with cardamom and vanilla. An egg-free Indian shortbread recipe that will just melt away in your mouth!
Does this recipe rings a bell? Nankhatai Recipe from your favorite bakery shop. Growing up, we had a famous bakery shop in our neighborhood and the aroma of their freshly baked bread, warm pies and pastries would fill the air.
The heavenly smell of cinnamon rolls, muffins and cookies would lure us into that shop.
The sight of all their baked delights made me drool, and my dad and I never left the bakery shop without buying nankhatais. Memories never fade…. feeling nostalgic. 😕
WONDERING WHAT DOES KHASTA MEAN?
Khasta is a term used for ‘light and flaky shortbread cookies,’ and this nankhatai/ shortbread or biscuits are –
- crumbly and
- incredibly delicious!
The cookies aren’t too sweet and are perfect for any occasion!
SECRET TO A CRISPY NANKHATAI RECIPE!
This is a straightforward shortbread recipe that uses five basic ingredients that can be easily found in your pantry.
Additionally, it uses no baking soda and baking powder. Surprised and does this make you walk away from the recipe?
Please wait and learn the secret to this khasta Nankhatai recipe.
The secret is that no liquid/moisture is added to this Nankhati. No moisture means no water or milk.
The less the liquid in the cookies it easier for the liquid to evaporate during baking, hence producing crispier Nankhatai.
How to Make Nankhatai Recipe?
This is a super easy and fail proof Nankhatai Recipe that has been tested and tried many times in my kitchen. It requires no fancy ingredients or complicated steps.
It’s a one bowl recipe where we begin by creaming butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Combine the dry ingredients with sugar-butter mix and knead until forms a soft, pliable dough.
Shape the dough like logs. Wrap it well in a wax paper and chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to an hour.
WHY CHILL THE COOKIE DOUGH?
The answer is simple –
Chilling the dough solidifies the fat (butter) in the cookies. So when we bake these chilled cookies, the solidified fat/butter takes time to melt, and during baking whatever steam is released it puffs up the dough, and the cookie spreads out less and becomes flaky.
And if we start baking the dough without chilling, the fat (butter) will melt right away resulting into spread out flat and greasy cookies.
Butter has a low melting temperature which allows the unchilled cookie to spread much more during baking resulting in falt cookies.
Bake these goodies for 12- 15 minutes. Depending on the oven, cooking time may vary.
Unlike other cookies, nankhatais will not brown up, and when taken out of the oven, they will still be soft and gooey.
No worries, allow them to sit for 5-10 minutes on the counter and they will become firm. When completely cooled, store in an airtight container and enjoy with your evening tea!!
Do give this Nankhatai Recipe a try and if you happen to make it then leave a comment below. Would love to hear from you. If you have any questions I would be happy to answer them.
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Nan Khatai Recipe
- 1.25 cup Maida (All purpose flour)
- 1/4 cup Sooji (Semolina)
- 3/4 cup Softened Unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup +1 tablespoon superfine Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla
- 2 teaspoon Chopped pistachios to sprinkle on top
- A pinch of Cardamom Powder to sprinkle on top
- Cream the softened butter and sugar in a bowl until light and fluffy.
- * Soften butter means that is still firm and holds its shape but forms a dent when pressed with a finger.
- Meanwhile combine flour sugar, sooji and vanilla essence in a large bowl.
- Combine wet and dry ingredients together and mix it well.
- Knead until it forms a soft pliable dough.
- Place the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to an hour. (read the tips above)
- After the chill time, roll the dough into a big circle. Preheat oven at 350 degree F.
- One way is to use a cookie cutter and cut out the nan khatais.
- Nan khatais are ready.
- Other way and the original way to shape nan khatais is to take a small dough ball in your hand.
- Flatten and shape them.
- Place them on a baking tray.
- Using a knife, gently make a cross on all the nan khatais.
- A closer look.
- Sprinkle cardamom powder on all the khatais.
- Place them in the preheated oven.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes. See how the crosses will open up .
- Remove from oven and place on the counter and allow them to cool.
- THEY WILL STILL BE SOFT when you remove the tray from oven.
- No worries.. when allowed to sit for 5-10 minutes they will become firm.
- This is how it will look from the back.
- Light and flaky nan khatais are ready.
- As per one's taste sprinkle chopped nuts on top of nan khatais.
- When completely cooled, store it in an airtight container and enjoy!!
- Please do not cut back on butter for this recipe. Fat is the backbone of this recipe.
- After the nankhatais are shaped, put a cross on them as shown above. Why make a cut on cookies? It helps the cookies to expand during baking.