Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Masala Tea and Crunchy Butter biscuits/cookies

After a long day of work, when he is very tired he needs nothing but a cup of tea. But he knew that he would scare me off if he ask me, so he either wouldn't ask for it or he would silently enter the kitchen and make his own cup. Since I had never tasted tea or coffee in my life (till now) I used to be really scared that I would never come up with a decent cup of tea. At least coffee I had the courage to make as there were instructions given on the label. But tea!!!!! how would I know which goes first, water or milk. I know that I could have asked my mom or mother-in-law but I was really embarrassed....even before marriage everyone used to say that I am a good cook. I used to try different cuisines but 'tea' never...it was like I had sworn against tea.

Finally I decided that if there is one person whom I could ask without spoiling my image then it would me my husband. So I asked him for a class room session. He was very happy to teach me (a chance to boss around). In the beginning it used to turn slightly bitter. I was really frustrated about the keep trying concept with this, but he neither complained about my attitude nor wasted the tea I made but gave honest feedback. Then slowly I started improving with time.

Now I am so proud and happy to say that he really loves my tea. I started with plain tea, then tried flavoured like cardamom tea, ginger tea and now its always the masala tea. Even though I have not tasted this I could really see that people loved this whenever they have it at my place.

(for 1 cup)

1 cup water
1/2 tsp whole black pepper
3 cloves
1 inch cinnamon stick
2 cardamom pods(slightly crushed)
1 inch ginger(grated)
1 1/4 tsp of sugar
1/2 cup milk
3/4 tsp tea leaves(any brand)

Boil the water in a pan. When it starts boiling add pepper, cloves, cinnamon, cardamom and ginger. Wait till the water reduces to half the quantity. Then add the tea leaves and let it boil for 2 mins. Then add the sugar and milk. Wait till it comes to a rolling boil. Switch off the stove and filter this using a tea filter. Serve hot with biscuits/cookies.

I may not know how the tea taste but I definitely know the taste of the butter biscuits that I serve along with this tea. When I used to be a kid we used to always get these biscuits and stock them. It will be served along with tea or coffee to the unexpected guests. There is a place near my home where they make these biscuits fresh and pack them for distributing to other shops. We used to get them hot from the oven. They taste heavenly especially during rainy season.

Butter biscuits

(Yields 6 biscuits)

1/4 vegetable shortening
1/4 sugar
1/2 cup All purpose flour
pinch of salt and baking soda

Cream the sugar and shortening using a wire whisk. Then add the salt and baking soda and then start adding the flour little by little to make a dough. Then divide them into 6 small balls. Flatten them using your palm. Bake them in a preheated oven at 350F for 12 to 15 mins or till they turn golden brown. Munch these with a cup of tea or coffee and enjoy.
Note: You may wonder why there is no butter in these biscuits:) I seriously don't know why they call this "Butter biscuit" since they use only "Dalda"(Hydrogenated vegetable oil) to make them in our place.

In most places tea is always served with one such biscuits. I had seen so many of my friends and families dipping their biscuits in the tea and savouring them. So when I saw the 'Made for Each Other' event in Asvadha I immediately thought of this "Cute couple". A hot cup of tea with crunchy biscuits is a perfect combination and hence make a perfect pair so I am sending this entry for the 'Made for Each Other' event.

I just baked 3 batches of these biscuits for Valentines Day for all the kids around my place:)
It came too good so I couldn't resist and hence treated myself with some.


Rathna said...

Thank you for sending me your entry :-)

Sandhya said...

These were the tastiest butter biscuit I ever had. But all the recipes are amazing and easy to cook. I am really happy you started this blog

Unknown said...

Thanks Sandhya:)

Cilantro said...

I love the butter cookies. Looks good and delicious.

Unknown said...

Thank you so much

Unknown said...

Hi, I just found your post while searching the web. Your recipe for Masala tea sounds yummy.
I thought you might like to know that there is a lot of research that shows that Hydrogenated Vegetable Oils are really bad for you, because of the trans-fats which are created.
I don't have a link but the Weston Price Organization has some good articles.
You would be better off using natural Palm Oil or Coconut Oil which hasn't been hydrogenated, or butter if you can get it.
Happy baking!

Unknown said...

yeah but I use crisco brand for this recipe which doesn't have trans fat. I also try to avoid using shortening most of the time. But this recipe does call for that and hence I use it.