Masala Biscuits/Spicy Savoury Indian Cookies~Daring Bakers August 2013 Challenge Part 2

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Thanks to Aparna Balasubramanian of My Diverse Kitchen for August 2013 Daring Bakers Challenge!
Masala Biscuit is a spicy savoury from the southern Indian states. Masala means ‘spice mix’.

Few decades back some could still remember the tall glass jars containing masala biscuits at your local bakeries. This Spice mixed cookies is more of a adult treat due to the amount of hotness, from the spices used. I have made sure this recipe is not that hot by altering few ingredients from the actual one.
Recipe source: My Diverse Kitchen
Ingredients
All-purpose flour 3/4 + 1 tbsp
Rice flour 1 tbsp (optional)
Baking powder 1/2 tsp
Baking soda 1/8 tsp
Salt 1/4 tsp
Unsalted butter 1/4 cup (1/2 stick/56gm/2oz), softened & cut into small cubes
Green chillies 1/2 of 1 chilli, chopped
Ginger 1/2″ piece, finely grated
Peppercorn 1/2 tsp, crushed coarsely
Cumin seeds 1/2 tsp, toasted and crushed coarsely
Sugar 1 tbsp
Curry leaves 1/2 tbsp, finely chopped
Coriander/ cilantro leaves 1/2 tbsp, finely chopped
Yogurt 2-3 tbsp
White/Black sesame seeds 1 tbsp

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Directions
• In a large mixing bowl, add all pupose flour, baking powder, baking soda & salt along with softened butter. Work with your hands or food processor till you get the texture of breadcrumbs.

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• Now add chopped green chillies, finely grated ginger, crushed peppercorn, cumin, sugar, curry leaves and coriander leaves. Knead for few minutes to mix well.

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• Then add 2 tablespoons of yogurt and start kneading the dough till you get a moist dough (not a wet one).

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• Do not over process or knead. Shape the dough into a ball. Flatten it into a disc and cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator for atleast an hour. You can also leave it overnight.

For the Masala Biscuits
• Preheat your oven to 350 degree F (180C) and line your baking trays with parchment paper.
• Lightly dust your work surface and roll out the dough to 1/8”(3 mm) thick. The thinner the better!
• Sprinkle sesame seeds uniformly over the dough and use your rolling pin, very lightly, to press them in.

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• Using cutters of your choice (about 2-1/4 inch (55 mm) to 2½ inch (65 mm) in size), cut out biscuits/ cookies and place them on the baking trays lined with parchment paper.

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• Brush a very thin coat of oil over them. This will help them to brown while baking.

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• Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or till you see the color change. (Baking time depends on the thickness and shape of your biscuits/ cookies).

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• Let them cool on the trays for about 5 minutes & transfer it to cooling racks to let it cool completely.
• Store them in airtight containers. It stays good for 4-5 days at a cool place, room temperature.

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