Nankhatai are shortbread biscuits popular in India and Pakistan. The word Nankhatai is derived from Persian word Naan meaning bread and Khatai from an Afghan word meaning Biscuit. In Afghanistan and Northeast Iran, these biscuits are called Kulcha-e-Khataye. Kulcha is a type of bread similar to Naan.
Nankhatai is believed to have originated in Surat in the 16th century, the time when Dutch and Indians were the important spice traders. A Dutch couple set up a bakery in Surat to meet the needs of local Dutch residents. When the Dutch left India, they handed over the bakery to an Iranian. The bakery biscuits were disliked by the locals. To save his business he started selling dried bread at low prices. It became so popular that he started drying the bread before selling it. With time, his experimentation with bread ultimately gave birth to Nankhatai.
Four years ago, On a my First Wedding anniversary, My hubby gifted me a Microwave Oven....At that time I was in Ahmedabad, and they used to arrange some learning class of microwave for two days in a week...Though I was familiar to use Microwave and all the modes of oven, but still if it is free then why not ;) !! So I went for two days, and on a second day they came with this recipe....So, I thought....Ok....I mean they gonna teach us how to make Nankhatai??? I was so excited, and I had note down all the measurements of ingredients and the method....And seriously, when she baked this shortbread biscuits, They were so so delicious and mouthwatering....I just had a single bite and I felt Mmmmmmmm........After this, I just get back to the home, gathered all the ingredients and made them...This was the first Baked dish at that time in my New Oven....And it comes out exactly what she has made...and I was Sooooooooooooooooo Happy !!! :)))...Today again I am making them and sharing with all my friends.....Happy Baking!!! :)
So, For this You will need:
1 Cup Ghee (Clarified Butter) (I prefer Vegetable Ghee)
1 Cup Icing Sugar (You can use Powder Sugar as well)
2 Tbsp Semolina
1/2 tsp Cardamon powder
5-6 Tbsp Desiccated Coconut
All Purpose Flour, As required
1. Line up all the Ingredients.
3. In a mixing bowl, Beat Icing sugar and Clarified Butter well. (Note: I will suggest you to use vegetable Ghee (Vegetable Clarified Butter), The texture of these shortbread biscuits will be as same as you buy them from any bakery shop, If you are using Vegetable clarified Butter.)
4. Add Desiccated Coconut in a mixture of sugar and Butter, then mix roughly.
4. Now Add that much amount of All Purpose Flour and cardamom powder from which you can make a soft dough. just gently mix them and make a dough, dont mesh the dough. (Note: We have to follow this step because if we are meshing or hardly preparing the dough, Because of our hands heat the butter gets melt, and ofcorse we don't want that..So do this step gently.)
5. Make small size balls, roll them in a desiccated coconut and place on cookie baking tray. When its done place the baking tray into the preheated oven.
6. Let it bake about 15-20 minutes at 180 degrees.
7. After 10-12 minutes, bring oven temperature to the lowest 150 degrees.
8. Bake about 10 more minutes, so that Biscuits cooks well from inside too. (Note: This is fully depends on your Oven, In some Oven it takes less time, some takes more, In my oven If I am following any book recipe or from somewhere else, I have to make temperature 20 to 30 degree low from the book, because my oven bake too quick and in a less time, So better keep on checking your baking tray after 10 minutes.)
9. After 10-12mins, turn off the oven but do not take out the tray yet. Keep them for another 15 mins inside the oven.
10. Take out the tray after 15 mins or so and let it cool about 10 mins.
Your Yummy and mouthwatering Coconut Shortbread Biscuits (Naankhatai) are ready to eat.
Happy Baking!!! :)