Makes about 25 medium sized cookies
Flour – 140g
Butter – 100g
Sugar (powdered) – 150g
Egg / Milk – 1 / 25ml
Baking Soda (Soda bicarb) – a pinch
Caramel*. – 10g
Chocolate chips – 75g
Vanilla essence – 2.5ml
Sieve the flour and baking soda. Cream the butter on a big plate with circular motion of your palm. Remember to move your palm only in one direction because as you are creaming air is getting incorporated into the mixture and you can feel it getting fluffy and light. If you move your hand in the opposite direction then the air would get removed which we don’t want to happen. Gradually add the sugar while continuing with the circular motion of the palm.
Beat the egg ( add milk for eggless cookies ) and add it gradually to the mixture while continuing the circular motion. If you find the mixture curdling add a spoonful of the sieved flour and mix it in. Add vanilla essence and the caramel
Add the sieved flour gradually and continue with the circular motion of the palm till you get a homogenous dough. Add the chocolate chips to this and mix with a light hand. Cover it and rest for 10 mins.
Preheat oven to 1600C. Grease a baking tray and drop walnut sized dough on it with enough space in between for the cookies to expand while cooking. Bake for 15-18 mins till the cookies turn golden brown. Remove the baking tray and while they are still warm gently pick up the cookies and transfer them to a wire rack. Cool and store in an airtight jar.
*. To make 10g of caramel take 15g or 1tbsp of sugar in a heavy bottomed pan and heat it till the sugar turns into a brown syrup. Take it off the heat and add a few tablespoons of water while whisking the syrup. If it becomes lumpy just add a little bit more water and keep it on a low flame till the lumps dissolve but remember to stir constantly.
Makes about 20 tarts
For tart shells
Flour (maida) – 250g
Chilled butter – 125g
Cold water – 30-35ml
Pizza sauce* : 3/4 of a cup
Finely chopped onions – 1 cup
Finely chopped capsicum – 1/2 a cup
Boiled corn kernels – 3tbsp
Sliced olives – 2tbsp
Finely chopped and sauted mushrooms – 3tbsp (optional) [ Caution: Do not put raw mushrooms ]
Mix all the above ingredients and add salt, dry oregano, dry parsley and chilli flakes as per your taste.
Grated mozzarella cheese
This is a short crust pastry that you are making so the main point to keep in mind is that the butter and water should be chilled and not at room temperature.
Sieve the flour. Cut the cold butter into the flour. You can use a broad knife or a dough cutter for this. Once the butter has been cut up into reasonably small pieces rub the flour and the butter lightly between both your palms. The mixture will now get a sandy texture. Add the chilled water to it little by little and bind it together. Put it in an airtight box and refrigerate it for 30 mins.
Take a small portion of the dough and roll it out.to a medium thickness If the edges break while rolling then the water content is fine there is nothing to worry. Line a muffin / cupcake tray with this rolled out dough. Prick the inner surface with a fork so that the tart shell does not get puffed.
Preheat your oven to 1800 C. A 3×3 muffin tray will take 20 mins to bake. Take out the tart shells and cool them. These shells can be stored for upto 3-4 days in an airtight container.
Fill the tart shell upto 3/4ths with the pizza filling. Top it up with grated mozzarella cheese. Bake for 15-20 mins at 1800 C till the cheese on top melts.
* Homemade Pizza sauce :
500g tomatoes 1 tsp sugar
1 onion finely chopped 1 tsp chilli powder
6 garlic flakes crushed 1 tsp dry oregano
2 tbsp olive oil / any cooking oil Salt to taste
Boil water in a big vessel and add washed tomatoes to it once it starts to boil. Simmer it for about 10 mins or till you see the tomato skin peeling off. Drain and cool the tomatoes and blend them into a puree.
Heat oil in a thick bottomed pan and add the onions and garlic. Saute them till golden brown. Add chilli powder, sugar and the purred tomatoes. Boil till the mixture thickens and gets a rich red colour. Add salt and oregano. Cool and store in refrigerator in an airtight bottle. This has a shelf life of about a week.