Saturday, December 20, 2014

Lebkuchen – German Gingerbread

Maida- 250 gms
Almonds- 85 gms (powder in mixer)
Ginger powder- 2tsp
Cinnamon powder- 1tsp
Baking powder-1 tsp
Soda-bi-carb- 0.5 tsp
a pinch each of:
ground cloves and black pepper
Zest of one lemon
Honey- 200 ml
Butter- 85 gms
For the glaze:
Icing sugar 100 gm
water- 2-3 tsp
Mix all the dry ingredients well in a large bowl. Heat the butter and honey in a pan over low flame until butter melts. Pour into the flour mixture along with lemon zest. Mix well into a solid dough. If liquid is insufficient add a few drops of honey and mix. Allow to cool. Make into small lemon sized balls. Flatten each ball into a disc shape. Preheat oven to 180C. Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper giving sufficient space between the discs and bake at 180 degrees C for 12 to 15 minutes until brown.
Remove and cool on wire rack.
Mix icing sugar and water. Dip the top of each biscuit in the icing and spread with a knife. Allow to dry in a warm place.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Masala Buns

Plain flour or maida- 250 gms
Oil- 4 tbsp
Salt- 1 tsp
Active dry yeast-1 tsp (double if fresh yeast)
Sugar- 3 tsp
Water- 50 ml
Milk- 50 ml
For the Masala:
Onion- 1- quartered and sliced fine
Green chillies-4-5
A fistful each of Curry leaves and Coriander leaves
Oil- 1 tbsp
Salt to taste
Grind the chillies, greens and salt coarsely and keep aside. Heat the oil in a pan, add onion and a little salt. When onion is done well, add the ground mixture, mix and switch off the stove and allow to cool.
Warm milk and water together. Take care not to heat too much; or the heat will kill the yeast. Add sugar and yeast. Cover and keep aside in a warm place for 15 minutes. Once yeast is fully dissolved and frothy, it is ready.
Take flour and salt in a large bowl and mix well. Make a well in the centre and add a tbsp of oil. Add the yeast mixture and knead well into a soft dough. Knead for about 10 minutes until it is not sticky. Place the dough in a large greased bowl, cover and keep aside for 2 hours.
Add the prepared masala to the dough. Apply 1 tbsp oil and punch the dough for about 5 minutes. Shape into Buns using oil and let it rest covered on a greased baking sheet for about an hour. Leave sufficient space between buns since the size will increase. Bake in a preheated oven at 200 degrees C for 10-15 minutes or till golden. A couple of minutes prior to removing, brush the top with a little milk.
Allow to cool a bit before transferring to wire racks for cooling.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Braided Butter Bread

Plain Flour- 500 ml and some more for dusting
Butter- 50 gms (softened)
Salt- 1 tsp
Sugar- 3 tsps
Warm Milk- 100ml
Warm Water- 110 ml
Fresh Yeast- 2.5 tsps
For topping:
Mix together 1 tsp each of:
Sesame seeds
Poppy seeds
Caraway seeds
Dry minced onion
Coarse salt
For brushing:
3tsp milk
Mix the yeast in warm water until it dissolves and keep covered for 10 minutes. Take care not to use hot water. One method is to test the heat the water by applying on your wrist. It should feel comfortably warm and not hot.
Add the milk, softened butter, sugar, Flour and salt and mix well. Knead for about 8-10 minutes until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise until it doubles for about an hour.
Punch down the dough. transfer to a lightly floured surface. Divide into 3 equal portions. Shape each into a 10 inch rope. Place the ropes on a large greased baking tray and braid. Pinch ends to seal and tuck under. Cover and let rise for about 45 minutes.
Brush the loaf with milk and sprinkle the topping. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200 degrees C for 25 minutes. Remove and cool over wire rack.