Karachi biscuits are popular Indian tea time cookies. These biscuits have derived their name from the famous “Karachi bakery” in Hyderabad, India. They are sweet, crumbly, melt in the mouth, studded with candied fruits and flavored with two of my favorite’s- cardamom and rose.
I have never visited Hyderabad, let alone this bakery. But their baked goodies are a must have if you ever visit Hyderabad! They sell their baked goodies commercially not only in India but worldwide too, hence it’s not very difficult to find them. Even here, in the US, you will easily find these biscuits in any Indian store. Almost 2 years ago, I came across a recipe for these biscuits from Cafe Garima. I have slightly adapted her recipe by including custard powder in these cookies. Custard powder is nothing but cornflour, flavored with vanilla. Corn flour makes these cookies tender and more crumbly. I have stopped buying these biscuits from the store, but rather just whip these up at home. They are super simple, require no special expertise, even a beginner can make these delicious cookies with ease.
Ingredients- Measuring cup used, 1 Cup = 250 ml, 1 teaspoon = 5 ml, this recipe yields 25 medium sized cookies
1 cup unbleached all purpose flour/maida ( spooned and leveled)
2 tablespoons vanilla flavored custard powder/ Cornflour
1/2 cup room temperature, softened salted butter, not melted ( leave the butter on countertop, until soft )
1/2 cup powdered sugar ( you may reduce it to 1/3 cup for lesser sweetness)
1/2 cup candied fruit/tutti frutti
1/4 teaspoon cardamom powder
1/2 teaspoon rose essence ( or pineapple essence )
1.Sift the flour and custard powder in a sufficiently large mixing bowl.
2.Place butter in the bowl of your stand mixer ( you can use your hand mixer or a whisk too), sift in powdered sugar, beat on low heat intially, until the powdered sugar is mixed with the butter, then increase the speed to medium and beat till light and creamy.
3.Add cardamom powder, rose essence , candied fruit and mix well.
4.Now switch to the lowest speed and add the flour in 3 parts incorporating the butter into the flour. Gently bring the dough together. Do not knead . If at all the dough is dry, sprinkle few teaspoons of milk at a time, do not add too much. I didn’t require any milk. The dough should be soft.
5.Shape the dough into a log and wrap in a cling film. Refrigerate it for 3-4 hours or overnight.
6.Preheat the oven at 180 C /350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove the log from the refrigerator and cut slices about half an inch thick.
7.Lay the cookies on the sheet at least 2 inches apart as they expand when they bake.
8.Bake for 13-15 minutes. When the bottom of the cookies begins to brown, they are done. They will be soft in the middle, but will firm up on cooling. Cool in the baking tray for five minutes and then transfer to the wire rack to cool completely.
The cookies stay good for two weeks when stored in an air tight container.
You may also like-
Eggless Bourbon biscuits, recipe here
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