Sunday, 23 December 2012

Checkerboard Tea Wafers

If you've been doing any shopping lately, you must have seen how packed all the malls, department stores, and superstores are. I don't just mean packed with people in the line-ups. I mean, the parking lots are full; drivers are hastily dropping off passengers to get a head start in the store; and the aisles and shelves are stacked to the ceiling with products. Not to mention those huge, brightly coloured "sale" signs everywhere. Although I consider holiday shopping more fun than stressful, I look forward to a hot cup of tea after. What better to go with the tea than these tea cookies? They are thin and crispy like a wafer, and flavoured with two of my favourite kinds of tea: earl grey and green tea. I didn't want to mix the flavours, so I decided to do a checkerboard design. 

The Recipe
Sift and stir dry ingredients: 
  • 1/2 cup wheat bran
  • 1/3 cup chapati flour 
  • 1/4 cup defatted soy flour
  • 3 tbsp white sugar (if you prefer sweeter, you can add more, or dust with icing sugar after baking, or add a glaze)
  • 1 tsp instant dry yeast 
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp crushed earl grey tea leaves (or 1 tsp matcha green tea powder)
Wet ingredients: 
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 whole egg
  • 2 tbsp butter
Melt butter and add to milk. Crack in the egg and whisk to get a fairly even mixture. Stir into flour mixture until a dough ball forms. Dough should be soft, almost like a bread dough. Wrap or cover and place in a warm place to let rise. In another bowl, repeat the recipe, but add 1 tsp matcha green tea powder. Allow both doughs to rest and rise for about 30 minutes. Roll out both pieces of dough in one layer to 1/8" (just less than 0.5 cm) thickness. Dough will be soft (this helps with rise and wafer texture) so dust with flour as needed. Cut out into a grid of squares. Go for any size you like here. Arrange squares in a checkerboard pattern on a lined baking sheet with edges just touching each other. Cut out large rounds with a cookie cutter. At this point, you can remove the scraps to just get the perfect circles, but I couldn't bring myself to waste the effort of lining them up, so I just left them there. They snap off easily after baking anyway. 

Bake at 350°F (175°C) for about 15 – 20 minutes. Allow to cool on a rack and enjoy!

Note: You can cut into strips or make the two cookies separately (and have a bite of each at a time) if you wish. Green tea powder can also be found in Chinese supermarkets or tea shops

Dry ingredients for green tea cookies

Checker arrangement. I didn't figure to do this on the baking tray and had to flip this over. 

Fresh baked checkerboard tea cookies. 

Checkerboard tea cookies

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