Category: Cakes & Bakes

Chai Spiced Homemade Granola Vegan and GF

Chai Spiced Homemade Granola Vegan and GF

Hello everyone! It’s been sometime I wrote something new here….about time, isn’t it?! 😀 So let’s make something quick for your breakfast today! I bring to you Chai Spice Homemade Granola – which is Vegan and Glutenfree 👌🏼👌🏼 sound good? ….yes, it tastes good as well! Besides, the whole point is that eating fresh and healthy is so easy and quick.

Chai Spiced Homemade Granola Vegan and GF

Looks good?! Lol! I’m always looking at options for healthy and easy to do breakfast fixes for my hubby. He loves his muesli or granola with some warm milk along with his beloved ‘chai’ that has been brewed with ‘chai‘ spice (an aromatic blend of various whole spices like cardamom, nutmeg, cinnamon to name a few…I promise I’ll do a post on that soon). You guys already know he’s a tea-addict and his mornings must start with huge mug of steaming ‘chai‘ :)….I happily indulge him!

Obviously, he won’t have granola everyday…on other days he enjoys some hot and spicy Aloo ke Parathe (Indian flatbread stuffed with spicy mashed potatoes). Well, i must say that they happen to my absolute favorite breakfast in the whole wide world!!! I usually pair them with some Restaurant Style Tandoori Chutney (also goes well with kebabs). This combo keeps us going till lunch.

Chai Spiced Homemade Granola Vegan and GF

Have you tried my Makka Methi ka Paratha (Indian flatbread flavored with fenugreek greens and green chilies). Yes, our North Indian genes crave for parathas every other day….heheh!!

So, lets talk about what I wish to feed him on the other days…specially when he has a long day ahead of at work….when I know, his lunch is going to be late even though his lunch box will be sitting right on his desk (sigh)!!

I have been buying granola for the longest time now….but it had been on my to-do list since last year. So, finally sometime around February earlier this year, I gave it a shot for the first time. I had been eyeing the Build Your Own Granola ideas on Pinterest and they really give an amazing insight into how we can go about it and make them right in the comfort of your own home and ensure they are healthy and preservative-free!

Flavors…don’t even get me started on the flavors you can incorporate into your granola! I have tried some of the most amazing flavors and they all worked…my hubby, for one loved them! Since I am not a granola and milk kind of a girl, I have them with seasonal fruits…these days I am feasting on these gorgeous rainier cherries 🙂

But, since these are primarily made for my man…I wanted to try using ‘chai‘ spice for the longest time, was a bit worried if it’d be too spicy for our taste buds or would they be a bit of an experiment that could go wrong….Lol!! You know what…it works, and beautifully at that! I did add some pistachios and also threw in some dried cranberries for good measure, didn’t want the spice to overpower and the tang of the cranberries are just right.

All you need to do is add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients in large bowl, make sure everything is mixed real good. Spread the mixture onto a baking tray and bake it for about 30 minutes!

Chai Spiced Homemade Granola Vegan and GF

Chai Spiced Homemade Granola Vegan and GF

Sounds easy…doable?? Of course it is…let us learn to ‘Build our Granola’!

Chai Spiced Homemade Granola Vegan and GF

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: serves 2

Build your own healthy, delicious, vegan, gluten free, preservative free granola at home from scratch!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rolled oats (I used Quaker Oats)
  • 1 tsp chai spice
  • 1/4 cup pistachio
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp refined or canola oil
  • 2 tbsp demerara sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven @180 C.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add the oats, cranberries, pistachios, chai spice,desiccated coconut, salt and sugar.
  3. Mix these well.
  4. Next, add the oil and vanilla extract.
  5. Mix these well.
  6. Next, spread this mixture evenly on a baking tray and bake it for approximately 30-35 minutes or until the oats turn golden in color. If you feel they aren't cooked to perfection, continue to bake for a another 10 minutes or so.
  7. Once it's baked, remove the tray from the oven and set it on a cooling rack to let the granola cool down completely. They will continue crisp up as they cool down. This granola can be stored in airtight containers in the refrigerator or freezer for about 2 weeks.
  8. Enjoy these for your breakfast with some warm milk or some fresh fruits.

Notes

Every oven works differently, please adjust the baking time and temperature accordingly. After the first 15 minutes of baking, I usually take out the tray while the oven is running and stir everything around to ensure everything cooks uniformly. Be careful while you do this, ensure you are wearing oven mitts. Cool the baked granola completely before storing. You can use any nuts and dry fruits as per your preference. If you are not fond of 'chai' spice, replace it with cinnamon powder, cardamom powder, nutmeg powder. You can use almond extract instead of vanilla extract, it tastes really nice too. I have used demrara sugar in my recipe, feel free to use brown sugar or coconut sugar in your version.

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Do try this one soon, you’ll love it!

Love,

Shreya 🙂

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Chai Spiced Homemade Granola Vegan and GF

Cumin Cookies | Jeera Biscuits

The baking bug has bitten me for quite sometime now and there days when I am baking around the clock! It’s fun to do so little and I still get to enjoy big treats😍😍…besides, baking all my meals sounds like a doable thing in these summers when standing in front of the stove is next to impossible!

I bake things which my hubby and I both enjoy apart from experimenting new recipes or recipes which I’d bookmarked earlier….dinner last night was a batch of my Baked Spring Rolls which I served with some homemade Schezwan Sauce and glasses after glasses of my Tropical Iced Tea to cool things down 😁 I still have a bottle of the tea sitting chilled in the refrigerator for tonight….planning to pair it with my mixed lentil Adai and Tomato Chutney….mmmm!

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So while all this kept happening, my hubby reminds me about something I used to bake in the early days of my experiments with baking…almost over 2 years ago…he says why haven’t I revisited my Bakery Style Cumin Cookies a.k.a. Jeera Biscuits! I was stumped 🤔…been over a year I made them for HIS teatime 😜😂😂 obviously, the poor chap must’ve been missing them!

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And these happened a while back…just for him…he came back home to an amazing aroma wafting out of our home and he’d already known that I’ve baked these Cumin Cookies. He says…come on, give me some straight away😋…didn’t wait for his tea or anything…..and I was super satisfied 😍

These bakery style cookies are so easy to put together, mildly sweet and tad bit salty..and the flavour of the roasted cumin seeds/ jeera seeds are something so earthy and yet addictive! Besides, they lend the crunch to them. The original recipe which I had first used called for eggs but I have worked around to avoid eggs just as I avoid eggs in my Sugar Cookie recipe.

Let’s start…

Yield: 24 cookies of 2″ each.

Equipment: electric whisk, measuring cup/ spoon, rolling pin, baking tray, parchment paper/ butter paper, cooling rack, cookie cutter/ knife, mixing bowl.

Ingredients:

1 cup + 1 tbsp all purpose flour (Maida)

1/2 cup / 1 stick unsalted butter (if using salted butter then skip adding any salt in the recipe)

1/4 cup icing sugar (I use icing sugar as it helps the cookies hold better shape, you can use regular powdered sugar)

1/4 tsp salt

a pinch of baking powder

2 tbsp jeera (Cumin seeds)

3-4 tbsp milk (if needed to bind the dough)

Method:

Take cumin seeds in a pan and roast them until they are slightly brown and fragrant. Set them aside to cool.

Line the baking trays with parchment paper/ butter paper. Lining the tray avoids having burnt bases and edges with the cookies and ensures they colour evenly even at the bottom and the cookies don’t spread too much.

Now, in the mixing bowl, cream together the butter and icing sugar until they are smooth and well incorporated.

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Next, seive in the flour and add salt. Whisk again until the flour is well incorporated into the creamed butter. Add baking powder and the 1 tbsp roasted cumin seeds. Make a smooth dough with your hands, you can add 1-2 tbsp milk if the dough needs some moisture to come together. It’s optional, I always add 2-3 tbsp. Smoothen the dough and set it aside for 10 mins.

Next, dust your work surface (I prefer silicon mats) with some flour and roll the dough to a thickness of about 3mm and cut them in any desired size and shape.

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Place the cut out cookies an inch apart on the lined baking tray. Sprinkle some roasted cumin over each cookie. Place the baking tray with the cookies in the refrigerator for 10 mins to set the cookies before baking.

Jeera biscuits Bakery style jeera cookies Polkapuffs recipes Shreya Tiwari photography How to make cumin cookies Recipe for cumin cookies

In the meanwhile, preheat the oven @180’c for 10-12 minutes.

Once the cookies have set in the refrigerator, bake them @180’c for 12-13 minutes using both upper and the lower heating elements/ rods. They will turn slightly golden on the edges once ready. (Every oven works differently so adjust the baking time and temperature according to that)

Jeera biscuits Bakery style jeera cookies Polkapuffs recipes Shreya Tiwari photography How to make cumin cookies Recipe for cumin cookies

The base of the cookies…a perfect golden brown 😍

Once baked, keep the tray on a cooling rack and let the cookies crisp up on the tray as they continue to cook for a few minutes on the hot tray. Remove them from the tray and place them on the cooling rack to let the cookies/ biscuits cool completely before storing in airtight boxes, they keep well for upto 3-4 days.

They taste best when served fresh with some tea/ coffee or simply as a munchy😀

Jeera biscuits Bakery style jeera cookies Polkapuffs recipes Shreya Tiwari photography How to make cumin cookies Recipe for cumin cookies

You can add more sugar or salt, as per your choice. But be generous with the cumin!

Love,

Shreya💖

Cumin cookies | jeera biscuits

 

Eggless Chocolate Sponge Cake in Pressure Cooker | Vegan Chocolate Sponge Cake Recipe

I am back with another easy pressure cooker cake recipe! Yayy! Yayy….because it’s eggless this time! Yup….I know most of my beloved readers out there wanted to learn to bake an eggless cake in the pressure cooker the last time when I’d posted my Mom’s Vanilla Sponge Cake in the Pressure Cooker recipe….. I also know that I am a bit late than I thought I would be…but better late than never, right!? 😄 A ONE BOWL WONDER….

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The best thing about this cake is that it can be baked as well. So, it ain’t necessary that you must bake it in a pressure cooker only. I use the same recipe to bake some muffins in my OTG from the leftover batter as this cake baked in the pressure cooker….and this what it looked like…perfect flat top! You can frost it like a pro!

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It was just perfect…this is my go to recipe whenever I am planning on an eggless, vegan chocolate cake😍 I had discovered this recipe long ago..although it had butter originally but I have been using oil …and it stayed with me. Works like a charm….perfect texture!

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I have used this recipe even for a proper frosted cake. It’s easy to slice in layers and frost well as the crumbs do not just fall off either. It stays fresh for 2-3 days at room temperature too.

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Since I’ve raved so much about it…it’s only fair we look at recipe now😀

Yield: a 6″ square cake (in pressure cooker) and 4 medium cupcakes (baked)

Equipment: a mixing bowl, measuring cups/ spoons, baking tin, a large pressure cooker, a spare steel bowl, a cooling rack, parchment paper/ baking paper.

Ingredients:

1 + 1/2 cup All purpose flour (Maida)

1 cup + 2 tbsp powdered sugar

1/4 cup cocoa powder

1 ts baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 ttsp baking powder

1/3 cup oil (I used regular cooking oil)

1 cup warm water

1 tbsp lemon juice / vinegar

1/2 ttsp vanilla extract

Method :

Line the cake tin with baking paper/ parchment paper. Dust it with a bit of flour.

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In a large mixing bowl sift together flour, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt.

Next, add lemon juice, oil, vanilla extract, warm water. Mix everything well but do not over mix the ingredients as that results in a heavy cake.

Heat the pressure cooker on high flame for 10 mins. Place a stand/ bowl or plate inside at the bottom. DON’T ADD WATER IN THE COOKER.

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Fill the batter in the ready tin upto half its capacity and place the tin in the heated pressure cooker on the bowl/ stand kept at the base. Cover the pressure cooker with it lid but remove its gasket and weight. Bake on medium flame for 40-45 mins.

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Do a toothpick test and check if the cake is ready after 40 mins, it should come out with a few moist crumbs, if your cake is ready then remove from the cooker using kitchen tongs and cool the tin on cooling rack for 15-20 mins before unmoulding the cake.

If the cake in undercooked, then let it cook for another 10 mins. It should be ready by then. Slice and serve.

To bake the muffins, fill each muffin mould upto 3/4 th of it’s capacity. Then, I pre-heated the oven @180’c for 10 mins. Next, I  baked the muffins for 20-22 mins @180’c. (Each oven works differently so please adjust the baking time and temperature). Do take a toothpick test. Cool them for 15 mins on a cooling fack before unmoulding. Enjoy!

This cake keeps well in an airtight box for 2-3 days.

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Make this soon…because it hardly takes any time! Sounds cheesy…well…I can’t help it!! 😂

Love,

Shreya💗

Vegan Chocolate Cake in pressure cooker

Glutenfree Strawberry Crumble

Remember how I told you guys that I was almost literally rolling in strawberries when I shared my No Pectin 3 Ingredient Mixed Berries Jam recipe sometime last week….well this is another proof that I was actually more than rolling 😂😂 🍓🍓 still have so many more…I have frozen some and the rest I keep chomping on as I keep going about my chores!

They are sweet and so so refreshing… I can’t really put it into words..and while I am hooked to them berries, my hubby loves his muskmelons! Eating seasonal I guess! Besides, the temperatures have soared in the last few days and it’s only the first week of March 😩 …. I think we will live on Watermelon Green Tea Coolers and some Kiwi Agua Frescas or a sorbet on second thoughts ☺️ Well, I don’t mind that in all honesty!

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Anyways, so when I am not having these beauties as they are or freezing them…I think of healthier and more delicious ways to have them as desserts. So, I came across something online which so good and had just 140 calories per serving! My hubby would love it! He likes his strawberries cooked or stewed…rather than as a fruit. But sadly, the recipe called for All Purpose Flour 😑😑….. Thinking about replacing it gave me an idea to make it Glutenfree! Simple ingredients and so easy to make….I couldn’t stop grinning 😉

You can use APF if you like that, but I have replaced it with Cornflour or Cornstarch. You won’t even know the difference in flavour! This recipe also includes oats and nut flours (if you are allergic, please avoid them).

So, shall we make ourselves some Glutenfree Strawberry Crumble?!…..

Yield: serves 2

Equipment: ramekins or individual cupcake tin moulds, measuring cup/ spoons, cooling rack, baking tray, 2 small mixing bowls.

Ingredients:

1 cup roughly chopped strawberries (frozen or fresh)

1 tbsp cornstarch/ corn flour

1-2 tbsp sugar (use more or less as per your taste)

1 tbsp cold and cubed unsalted butter

3-4 drops vanilla extract/ essence

a pinch of salt

4 tbsp rolled oats (powdered in a blender, basically oat flour)

3 tbsp almond flour

a few whole strawberries and some fresh mint leaves to garnish

Method:

Preheat the oven @180’c

Use some oil to grease the ramekins/ individual cupcake tins.

In a small mixing bowl, add chopped strawberries with vanilla extract. Mix well. Divide equally  into the two greased ramekins/ tins.

In another mixing bowl, add corn flour/ cornstarch along with the sugar. Mix well. Divide equally onto the portioned strawberries. Mix them once in the ramekin itself.

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In the same mixing bowl, add almond flour, salt, cubed butter and oats flour. Rub these together with the tips of your finger until they resemble bread crumb like texture.

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Divide this topping equally over the two strawberry filled ramekins/ tins.

Strawberry crumble recipe Recipe for Glutenfree strawberry crumble Polkapuffs recipes Shreya tiwari recipes Food photography Rustic propsIMG_6874

Bake at 180’c for about 25-27 mins or until the strawberries start bubbling up and the top crust looks crisp. Mine were done in 20 mins. Every oven does work differently so keep an eye after 20 mins of baking.

Once done, remove from the oven and place on the cooling rack for a few minutes. We enjoyed them warm as they were, but if you wish, serve these with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!! Bliss😍😍😍

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Please note:

~I have used glass ramekins meant for baking at higher temperatures. You can use regular white porcelain ones too or just use a single cake tin and bake the whole thing as a large serving and then later divide into 2-3 portions as per your choice. The taste and the method shall remain the same.

~You can serve this cold too. Once baked and cooled, this can stay in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Just ensure you’re covering it well with some aluminium foil.

~follow the same recipe with raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, etc. as well.

Glutenfree Strawberry Crumble by Polkapuffs

Love,

Shreya 💝

Adapted from Diethood.com

Eggless Fudge Brownies (Part WholeWheat)

No, these brownies don’t contain strawberries….but I have been throwing these beauties on everything…literally! To my salads…my desserts..my breakfast…I guess my dal tadka is the only thing that is yet to be introduced to them berries 😂😂😂😂😂…. 

Anyways…we love a good brownie..so much less job than doing a proper cake and a lot more chocolatier than a chocolate cake even! It’s gooey and the flavours are so much more intense….if you know what I mean.

img_6767

The texture of this heavenly slice speaks for itself, doesn’t it!? And …this also has some Wholewheat flour…I mean I always to make a Wholewheat brownie but wasn’t sure if the texture so I tried using APF (maida) and wholewheat in 50:50 ratio. The first attempt was sad… I didn’t like the look of the brownie and neither was flavour sitting right due to the texture!

In my first attempt, I had obviously over beaten the mixture which resulted in really uneven and gritty (read rough) textured brownies. Also, the butter was slightly too warm than necessary and that too was an issue.

So, my second attempt which followed the first one in just 2 days, as I was curious to make it work. And work it did! I kept everything ready as always and kept reminding myself that I need to go slow instead of my quick ways! So, if you do try this recipe please follow the steps carefully. This time I didn’t over beat the mixture and carefully checked the temperature of the butter before proceeding to the subsequent additions.

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In my personal opinion, they  could look a little better but working with wholewheat and APF that too with out eggs is a bit difficult for me….needs more practice!

Overall the taste was good and the sweetness just right…I guess that’s what matters the most ☺😁😁

Few things to remember-

Use a good quality cocoa powder in this recipe as that is what adds the real taste.

Line the baking pan well with parchment or baking paper or dust the baking pan carefully with the flour to avoid the brownie to stick to it post baking. There is nothing worse than a good brownie getting ruined because it was sticking to the baking pan.

Never over beat the brownie mixture/ batter. It results in dry brownies.

Never over bake the brownie. That will again make it dry and very crumbly.

Let’s  bake you a brownie!

Yield : 9 large or 12 small square slices

Equipment: baking pan (I used 7″ square pan), parchment paper/ baking paper, measuring cups/ spoons, heat proof bowl (or used stainless steel bowl), a saucepan, large mixing bowl, silicon spatula, a small wired whisk, cooling rack.

Ingredients:

7 tbsp maida (APF)

6tbsp wholewheat flour (I used Aashirwaad select flour)

6+1/2 tbsp cocoa powder (I used Cadbury’s)

7 tbsp butter (unsalted) 

1/2 cup thick yogurt (I used homemade curd which I hung in a muslin cloth for 15 mins to get rid of any water)

4-5 tbsp milk at room temperature (optional, to be used only if the batter gets to thick/ dry)

1 cup powdered sugar (add more or less as per your preference)

1 tsp vanilla extract/ essence

1 tsp baking powder

any nuts or chocolate chips, etc. of your choice can be added to the batter!! 😁

Method:

Line the pan with parchment paper/ baking paper. Alternatively, grease it with some oil and dust it generously with maida (APF). Set it aside.

Pre-heat the oven @180’c.

Heat 1 cup of water in the saucepan, it should not be boiling hot, just gentle bubbles are enough. Place a heatproof or stainless steel bowl on top of the saucepan in such a way that the base of the bowl I’d 2-3 inches above the level of the water below in the pan (method is called bain-mariè).

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Add butter in the bowl. Let the butter melt and simultaneously whisk it very gently to give an even texture. Be careful while doing this as the water below must not enter the bowl with the butter.

Once the butter has melted completely, add powdered sugar and cocoa powder. Whisk again. The mixture will first look a little rough but keep whisking gently, it will turn out very smooth. Take the bowl off the saucepan now. Set this bowl aside to cool down for a few minutes.

Then add the yogurt and vanilla extract at this stage. Whisk again and make sure the batter is smooth. Next, seive in the APF and wholewheat flour along with baking powder.

Now keep the whisk aside and use a silicone or wooden spatula and gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Do not over mix. (If you feel the batter is way too thick and dry, add 3-4 tbsp milk in to batter and fold the batter gently. This step is optional, I added 1 tbsp of milk as that much was enough).

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Pour the batter into the lined baking pan. Tap the pan a few times on the platform to release any air bubbles. 👆🏼

Bake @180’c for 25-30 mins using just the lower heating elements/ rods. Once it’s ready, do a toothpick test – The test is different here, when the brownie is ready, the toothpick inserted in the centre must come out with some moist batter or crumbs. The toothpick must not come out clean. If it comes out clean, means the brownie has been over cooked.

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That is what my brownie looked like just out of the oven 👆🏼

Remove the ready brownie from the oven and set it on the cooling rack for 15 mins. Then place it in the refrigerator for an hour. Then cut in to slices and remove from the pan. (Refrigeration ensures clean slices!)

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Wow! I am still drooling at the thought of these….😋😋

If you liked these then you must try Loaded MnM Oreo Bars or Nutties Brownie too!

Looking for something more decadent….try my gooey Brownie Muffins.

Love,

Shreya❤

Eggless Fudge Brownies Wholewheat brownie recipe Eggless brownie recipe

 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread (Eggless)

I guess I can’t keep my hands off the oven…specially when I have to clean out left overs😉😉 I found some peanut butter sitting on one of the shelves in my pantry…and I was like….what can we do with this….. was just about 2-3 tbsps of it….guess it is from my last batch of eggless Peanut Butter and Choco Chip Cookies. Definitely not enough to make a sandwich for lunch. Anyhow, I put it out on the dining table only to notice a few ripe bananas from a copulent of days ago! 😑😑😑 why do I always have bananas when we hardly eat them!!

I will tell you why?! Because they make for some incredibly delicious banana muffins or bread. That’s when it clicked to me that I’d saved a delicious recipe including bananas and peanut butter with some chocolate 🤗🤗🤗 yayyyyy! I knew what I’d do with these. My afternoon project…and something very tempting for my hub’s evening tea 😀

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Look at the crumbs…so moist! This bread turned out to be so soft and light….just the way we like it! I am glad I did make this because a girl can never have too many banana bread recipes at hand! My Chocolicious Banana & Butterscotch Breakfast Bars are one of my go to recipes whenever I am in a rush to have something ready for a quick breakfast and have some ripe bananas. I think this Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread is going to be the next.

It’s just been a little over 18 hours since I baked this and almost half of it is gone….we are just the two of us😜😜 some gluttons!!! I baked two loaves, one of 7″ and another mini sized of 6″.

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Making mini loaves is a good idea if you have plans to send some to your loved ones. Else you can dump all of the batter in one larger loaf tin and bake a single bread. (**Always remember to fill the loaf tin only to 3/4th of it’s capacity to avoid the batter spilling over as it bakes and also line the tray well with parchment paper as shown in the pictures below).

I did replace the eggs with thick homemade yogurt and the bread still turned out so good! But I will try with eggs the next time around just to see the difference.

Oh that reminds me…summers are around the corner…do try my 2 ingredient Banana Ice Cream 🍦 You can add raisins or some chopped roasted almonds to the ice cream as well 😊

But for now, let’s make us some delicious Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread 👌

Yield: 1 loaf of 7″ and 1 loaf of 6″

Equipment: a large mixing bowl, a small mixing bowl, a hand blender, measuring cups/ spoons, baking tins, parchment paper or butter paper, a silicon spatula, cooling rack.

Ingredients:

1 cup all purpose flour (Maida)

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cup powdered sugar

2 nos. medium ripe bananas

1/4 cup thick yogurt (not sour)

4 tbsp smooth peanut butter

1/8 cup (2 tbsp)  vegetable oil

1 tsp vanilla extract

6 tbsp milk

1/2 cup chocolate chips

Method:

Preheat the oven @ 180’c. Line the baking trays with parchment or butter paper. Set them aside.

Sift the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda in the smaller mixing bowl, stir them together and set the bowl aside.

In the larger mixing bowl, add chopped bananas, oil, milk, vanilla extract, yogurt and the peanut butter. Using a hand blender, blend these together until smooth.

Next, add the wet ingredients to the dry and using a silicon spatula, fold them together. Do not whisk, just fold them gently. (If the batter looks a bit dry, add 1 tsp to 2tsp extra milk but not too much, the batter must be thick and not runny). Add the chocolate chips next. Fold them in too with the ready batter. (If you do not have chocolate chips, use roughly chopped chocolate chunks of Morde cooking chocolate).

Fill the baking trays with the ready batter only upto 3/4th of their capacity. Tap the trays on the counter a few times to release any air bubbles.

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Bake them at 180’c for 25 to 30 mins or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the bread comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs.

(note – I baked the 7″ bread for 35 mins and the 6″ bread for approximately 27 mins. Please adjust the temperature and duration as per your own oven. Every oven does work differently).

Once the breads are baked, let them be in their tin for 10 mins, then unmould them and let them cool on the cooling rack for 20 mins or so before slicing.

Enjoy them with tea, coffee, milk or just as it is….I served these with some of my eggless homemade Honey Butterscotch ice cream as desserts last night! ……..now you know how it is getting over too soon😂😂

 

How to make peanut butter Choco chip banana bread Recipe for choco chip banana cake Eggless Banana cake recipe Polkapuffs Eggfree baking recipes Shreya tiwari recipes

Love,

Shreya❤

Adapted from Sincerely Jean.

 

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake

Everyone is baking Christmas cakes, some boozy, some not so boozy…filled with nuts, preserved fruits and a whole lot of warm spices. Amazing aromas and delicious tasting cakes sure mean Christmas 😋

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

A traditional Christmas cake is moist, very moreish, filled with rum or whisky soaked dry fruits and preserved fruit peels. These are soaked for over a month or so in advance to incorporate the flavours of the alcohol into the ingredients. These cakes are often served as a large round cake or even at times as petit fours. They could be served as a naked cake, just dusted with some icing sugar. One could even cover them in marzipan or ice them with whipped cream and then decorate them with Christmas embellishments. They all look so pretty! ☃️🎄

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake  How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

However, I have never baked a boozy cake or even a traditional Christmas cake for that matter. I first thought I’d soak all the  fruit peels and dry fruits in some orange juice with some whole spices but I wasn’t quiet sure when would I get to actually bake the cake. So I changed the plan and this worked out really well.

I decided to bake a warm and hearty Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake. Some simple and fresh ingredients transformed into this gorgeous cake. I must admit it did turn out better than I had thought. 😊 And the texture was perfect, moist crumb and not very dense.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

The addition of Cranberry gives the cake a bit of tartness in every bite that compliments the citrusy notes from the oranges very well. If you wish you omit the Cranberry here, do that or you can replace them with some colourful tutti Frutti or even chopped nuts. I added some warm spices here, feel free to omit them too if you wish. This recipe makes for an excellent summer cake with just the orange flavour or replace Orange juice with some lemon juice.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Let’s start…

Yield: a 7″ round cake.

Equipment: an electric whisk, 7″ cake tin, a large mixing bowl, a medium sized mixing bowl, a silicon spatula, cooling rack, baking paper/ parchment paper, measuring cups/ spoons.

Ingredients:

2 cup all purpose flour (Maida)

1+1/2 cup powdered sugar

4 nos. large eggs

1 stick/ 100 gms unsalted butter @room temperature

1/2 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp ground clove

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 cup milk

3/4 cup fresh orange juice

1/4 cup dried cranberries

icing sugar to dust the cake

Method:

Preheat the oven @180’c. Line the base of the tin with parchment paper/ baking paper and grease and dust the sides well.

In a medium size bowl, seive together the flour, ground nutmeg, ground cloves, ground cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda. Set it aside. Dust the cranberries with some flour and set them aside.

Next, in a large mixing bowl, whisk together the butter and powdered sugar until light and fluffy. I used an electric whisk and it took me about 3-4 mins of whisking. Now add one egg at a time and whisk the butter and sugar mixture with the eggs until light and fluffy once again.

Now, add the seived flour mixture and milk in the egg-butter-sugar mixture alternately and fold the mixture with a silicon spatula. Do not mix with a heavy hand else all the air whisked in the eggs will escape. Then add the orange juice and the cranberries. Mix well.

Pour the batter in the tin and bake @ 170’c using the lower heating rods/ coil for 60 mins approximately or until a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs. Note that every oven works differently so keep an eye on the temperature and the duration of the bake.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake  How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

I prefer baking my cakes low and slow, low temperature takes longer to bake the cake but ensures it rises well without any cracks on the top.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake  How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Once the cake is baked, remove it from the oven and cool it on a rack for 15 mins in the tin, then unmould it and cool it for a further 30 mins. Dust the top with some icing sugar. Slice it and serve. This cake keeps well for 3-4 days in an airtight container.

I used these spices, you can choose any spices of your choice.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake  How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking
Hope you will bake this soon, it’s easy, alcohol free and absolutely delicious! 😀

Love,

Shreya💖

 

Gingerbread Man Cookies (eggless, no molasses)

Christmas 🎄✨is so close and all I think about is what all I wish to bake for it😋 There’s plenty to be done…I have already finished doing a fair bit in whatever little time I have between so many things…I almost thought I’d have to skip it this year!

The one thing that was on my mind were these gingerbread man cookies!! ☃️☃️ I’ve had these cookie cutters for ages now and i was itching to put them to good use 😂 I mean, I did bake gingread cookies last year too but just regular round ones and hence didn’t even post them on the blog…not to forget, I had baked them for New Years!! Lol!! Well, there’s a good reason being a bit tardy…..will come to that shortly.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Don’t they look crisp, all nice and crunchy!? Well that’s precisely why I didn’t mind waiting for an entire year to share the perfect recipe for an egg free, molasses free version of these cuties. I had tried a couple of recipes last year (I had more time then I guess to keep experimenting)…anyways I didn’t enjoy them as they had egg and also called for molasses. I found all the ingredients easily but maybe it was the flavour that wasn’t quite right. Or maybe it was me..I did something…I don’t know! Those cookies looked great even as a typical round, flat version but obviously they lacked the snap and crunch in every bite.

After hunting for another version which would be eggless and molasses free, I did stumble upon a great keeper of a recipe!

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

The texture of these gingerbread man cookies is just how it’s supposed to be, crunchy and keeps fresh for upto 2 weeks in an airtight container. They have wonderful snap of them and the aroma…well it’s smells like Holidays in my home 😍 These best part, no electric heater or whisk is needed, no fancy equipments either…just make the dough and roll it out, use a cookie cutter of any shape you like, a star or some Christmas trees or even little mittens if you get hold of them. Bake these and ice them or enjoy them just like that.

Do read the recipe carefully before starting out. Also keep all the ingredients ready on the work surface, it will save you time and you will definitely avoid missing out anything important.

Also note that every oven works differently so please monitor trhe temperature and the baking time as per your oven. 

Yield: 16-18 cookies (I used medium sized cutters and rolled the dough a bit thick)

Equipment: a heavy bottomed saucepan, a wired whisk, measuring cups/ spoons, a large mixing bowl, cling wrap, cookie cutters or knife (if you’re going for simply square or rectangular cookies), baking pan, parchment paper/ baking paper, cooling rack.

Ingredients:

1+1/4 cup all purpose flour (maida)

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup sugar

1/8 cup milk (you may need a bit extra)

2 tbsp corn syrup (use honey if you can’t find corn syrup but I have not tried honey in this recipe so far)

a few golden or silver sprinkles to decorate the gingerbread men cookies (I ran out of icing sugar🙄😑)

Method:

In a large mixing bowl, seive together the flour, ground cinnamon, ground cloves, ground ginger, ground nutmeg and the baking soda. Set these aside.

Now, place butter, corn syrup, milk and sugar in the sauce pan and turn on the heat. Let the butter melt and the sugar dissolve completely on a low flame while stirring it continuously with a wired whisk. Once the sugar has melted, turn off the flame. Let the mixture cool for just 5-7 mins but not more as it thickens because of the corn syrup.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Next, add this butter and sugar mixture into the sieved flour and spices. Mix well using the whisk. The dough will come together very easily, if not add just 1/2 teaspoon of milk and bring the dough together. If needed only then add a few more drops of milk. If you add too much milk, the dough will turn out to be extremely gluelike and won’t hold a good shape. 

Now, wrap the dough in cling film and refrigerate for 10-15 mins. Please do not refrigerate the dough for longer as it will become too hard to roll out.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Preheat the oven @ 180’c.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator, place it between two sheets of cling wrap, dust it with very little flour and roll it out to a thickness of 4 mm approx (I like them thick, you can roll them to a thickness of 3 mm too). Use a cookie cutter or knife to cut them out.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas bakingimg_6212

Line a baking pan/ tray with parchment paper or baking paper and place these cookies a little apart from each other on it. Push  the sprinkles in place where you want to make the eyes and smile for the gingerbread man. Or else do an icing later. The sprinkles won’t melt while baking or fall off later.

Tip: roll and cut all the dough at once because this dough gets a bit sticky. If you have a small oven and can bake only 10 cookies at a time, keep the remaining cut out cookies on a plate in the refrigerator until you have to bake them. Please do not freeze the dough, it will become rock hard and will not come to a good texture to roll them later.

Bake the cookies @180’c for 13-14 mins using the lower rod for the first 11 mins and the upper and the lower, both rods for the last 2-3 mins to ensure a good colour. (My cookies cracked a bit as some of the sugar wasn’t melted well , but they still turned out crisp and didn’t spread much).

Keep an eye while baking them. Cool them on a cooling rack. Click here to learn how to make and use eggless royal icing to ice and decorate any cookies.

So it’s the corn syrup that replaces molasses and makes these cookies crisp.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Making this is a lot of fun and you can also include your kids while rolling the dough or icing the cookies later 😚

Love,

Shreya😍

Adapted from art of dessert.

Chocolate-Dipped Cinnamon Biscotti

Biscotti is a traditional Italian cookie which requires the dough to be shaped as logs, baked until done, then cooled a bit, sliced and baked again until crispy and crunchy! A perfect companion to your coffee. There’s no other way to describe it except – too good! 

Yes, if I may say so myself…this recipe is a keeper. Don’t hunting for other recipes of biscotti because you won’t need one if you try this recipe☺️ This has become my go to recipe for biscotti for the past year or so…and I bake them often!

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

You can obviously make out how crunchy these are, but definitely not in a bad way! They are crunchy and yet very enjoyable. I will point a few basics that I learnt from this recipe after failing with a couple other recipes in the past.

Essentially, eggs are the only wet ingredients that are added to any biscotti recipe but adding butter or oil can make them richer with obviously a much better texture. This recipe called for oil too but I somehow didn’t like the after taste and hence skipped it after the first trial.

Eggs, yes I have used 1 and a 1/2 egg here…don’t be surprised. I always make half of what this original recipe specifies and trust me, the 1/2 egg is very essential (I realised that too with some trial and error) so do not miss that. However, if you’ve decided to half my recipe, I am not sure how the egg factor will work out! Or probably, ping me later and I will definitely come up with a way for you to do that too ☺️ Else, just use a really small egg.

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When I talk about my favourite flavour in a biscotti, I will always say Cinnamon! Else, you can even keep it simple by adding adding just vanilla extract, or if you like nuts, add some sliced pistachios or almonds in the dough. However, if you’re using almonds, do toast them slightly to avoid ending up with soggy nuts. The original recipe calls for brown sugar but I have always used regular castor sugar and I am perfectly happy with the flavour! We, my hubby and I love the flavour of dark chocolate hence, I have dunked these biscottis in some melted chocolate once they had cooled off completely. 😋

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

Making biscotti takes time, it’s the baking twice that takes time and not making its dough. Getting the dough together is a quick mixing job, then this dough needs to be shaped into logs of deliciousness and then bakedonce…and another time too!! 😉

I have added a lot of step by step pictures as always …so you’re pretty much sorted! I don’t think you’ll have a difficult time going forward with it 😊

Yield: 12 cookies

Equipment: a rolling pin, cooling rack, baking tray, a large mixing bowl, a large serrated knife, parchment paper, measuring cups/ spoons, weighing scales (I have used it to measure everything to the last gram)

Ingredients:

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe  Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

131 gms all purpose flour (maida)

1/4 tsp cinnamon powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp baking powder

100 gms castor sugar

30 gms cold and cubed unsalted butter

2 nos. eggs (follow my tip on this)**

1 tbsp milk (for the egg wash)

30 gms dark chocolate (morde) + 1 tsp butter – for dunking

Method: (I am using step numbers, there’s a reason, so follow the steps carefully)

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon powder, salt and sugar.

2. Add cold and cubed butter into the flour and sugar mixture. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips until the flour mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Set it aside.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas bakingimg_5861img_5862

3. Now in a small bowl, whisk one egg. Now remove half of the whisked into another bowl (Save the half whisked egg for egg wash).

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

**Add one whole egg to the second bowl in which you have transferred half of a whisked egg. Now whisk this one and a half egg together. Add vanilla extract to the whisked eggs and whisk again.

4. Now add the whisked mixture of eggs and vanilla extract into the flour and butter. Use a large silicon spatula to mix until everything is well moistened but do not over mix.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

5. Now, sprinkle some flour in a large plate or the working surface. Place the dough on this floured surfaced and knead well for a few minutes. But keep enough loose flour around as this dough is super sticky so you’ll continuously need to dust the surface and your palms too.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

Dont worry about the dough even if it looks too sticky, it will all come together in a few minutes.

In the mean while, preheat the oven at 160’c.

6. Shape the dough as shown below and place it on a parchment lined baking tray. I had dusted the parchment paper with some flour too.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

7. We had set aside 1/2 a whisked egg aside, add 1 tbsp of milk to it and whisk again. Use it to Give an egg wash to the shaped dough.

8. Bake this shaped dough at 160’c for 20-25 minutes using the lower heating element. In the last 5 minutes of the baking time, turn on the upper heating elements to give a good colour to the top of the biscotti.

Leave the oven running at 140’c.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

9. Now, let this cool for about 15 minutes but not completely cold. Using a large serrated knife, cut it into 1.5 inch wide slices. Place them on the parchment lined baking tray as shown below.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe  Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

10. Bake the sliced biscotti on the first side for 7-8 mins. Then flip them over to bake the other side for another 5 mins. Remove them from the oven and let them cool completely before enjoying these crunchy treats with your favourite cuppa! 🤗

11. If you wish to dip them in chocolate too, melt together 30 gms of dark chocolate with 1 tsp of butter over a double boiler or in a microwave. Once the biscotti has cooled completely, dip one end of each biscotti in the melted chocolate, let them dry and then they are ready to serve! You can dip the entire biscotti in chocolate too, no one will judge you 😁

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

These stay crunchy and fresh in an airtight container for about a week or so.

These can be amazing edible gifts this Holiday Season! 🎄🎁☃️

Love,

Shreya💗

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction

Rose and Pistachio Cookies

It just dawned on me last weekend that Christmas is very close🎅🎄☃️❄️🎁…yeah, overload with the emoticons…but can you blame me…. this is the only time around the year that I can actually use them😂 LoL!! Anyways…so Christmas…what do you guys do for Christmas?! I’d love to know….I mean, in India, there is no snow in most parts of the country and all…but still I love the Christmassy air around me…probably my Convent days remind me of carols and decorations and parties…☺️🎉🎊….I wish I could make a snowman outside my porch and have a beautiful snowfall on Christmas Eve….

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

Anyways….that wish will have to wait..won’t it, now?! So the husband was travelling last week…and I obviously had a lot of time on my hands…besides, I knew he’d love coming home to something sweet and delicious…made by yours truly! What better than some exotically flavoured cookies to go with his tea!?

We really love freshly baked shortbread cookies…they are crisp, mildly sweet and the perfect base recipe to experiment with a ton of flavours. And that’s exactly what these Rose and Pistachio Cookies are all about.

Some of my readers wanted to know a little bit about a traditional “shortbread” when I had shared the recipe for my Almond Shortbread Cookies earlier this year….they could be great for your Christmas Cookie box too. They make for an ideal gift as well.

First baked in Scotland in 1736, shortbread is very popular around Christmas, the English refer to it as a biscuit, cookie for the Americans is traditionally made with 3 parts all purpose flour, 2 parts butter and 1 part sugar. Although, modern recipes even call for cornflour which gives a more stable texture to these cookies. However, it is added when you are making an eggless version, cornflour helps in keeping the shape of the cookie.

Shortbread is always baked at a low temperature until it’s very slightly golden around the edges…crumbly when just out of the oven but sets and becomes firmer as it cools down. It can be shaped as one prefers, round or square or simply hand rolled and pressed down with the tines of a fork. I personally like the scallop-edged ones☺️

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

The best part about these cookies is that they have such a mild fragrance of rose, you’ll almost miss it…not at all overpowering and then comes a welcome crunch from the Pistachio slivers….a perfect fusion of Mediterranean flavours with the old world charm of these very English biscuits 😀

Yield: 12 medium biscuits

Equipment: electric whisk, measuring cups/ spoons, baking paper, rolling pin, cookie cutter or knife, mixing bowl, baking tray, cooling rack, cling wrap.

Ingredients:

1+1/4 cup Maida  (APF), plus some extra to dust while rolling the dough

1/2 tbsp cornflour

1/4 cup+1 tbsp castor sugar

5 tbsp unsalted butter

1/4 tsp rose water

2-3 tbsp Pistachio slivers

dried rose petals to garnish (optional)

Method:

In a large mixing bowl, beat together the sugar and butter until the sugar combines completely with the butter and the mixture turns white and very fluffy, took me about 3-4 mins of whisking on high speed setting.

Next, add the rose water, cornflour and maida (APF) to the sugar-butter mixture and whisk once again until everything is combined well.

Wrap the cookie dough in some cling and refrigerate for 30 mins or put it in the freezer for 20 mins.

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

Preheat the oven at 160’c for 10 mins. Line a baking tray with baking paper and dust it with some maida (APF).

Once the dough is set post refrigeration, dust the dough with some maida (APF) and roll it between two sheets of baking paper to a thickness of 3 mm. Sprinkle the pistachio slivers and rolls once again slightly to ensure that the pistachio slivers are embedded into the dough.

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

Now, cut them into any shape of your choice. If using cookie cutters then dip them into some maida (APF) before using them to avoid unevenly cut cookies.

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Place the cut out cookies in the refrigerator for another 20 mins or in the freezer for 10 mins. Then bake @ 160′ c for 12-15 mins or until the edges turn slightly golden. You have to use only the lower baking element for the first 10 mins and then turn on the upper heating elements in the last 5 mins to give a little colour to the top of these cookies. (Note: every oven works differently so please keep an eye while baking these cookies).

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

This how they look fresh out of the oven. They crisp up as they cool. Let them rest on the warm baking tray for 10 mins then transfer to a cooling tray for them to cool completely.

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

This is what the base of the cookies looks like post baking and cooling completely. These can now be stored in airtight containers or cookie tins. They remain fresh and crisp for around 3-4 days.

Note: the cookie dough can be frozen in a cling wrap for upto a week. Thaw the dough in the refrigerator overnight, keep in room temperature for 10 mins and then roll, cut and bake them as per the above recipe. This recipe uses cornflour, it is very reliable as it stops the cookie from spreading too much as does the refrigeration. So please, follow all the steps correctly and you will have a perfect cookie☺️

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

My hubby loved these flavours, as did I. You can use this recipe as the base and incorporate any flavour of your choice.

Love,

Shreya💗

Adapted from wallflower kitchen.

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