Let me introduce you to Ma’amoul Cookies. These are Middle Eastern Date Stuffed Cookies. These Maamoul Cookies are not limited to just Date filling though. You can try other fillings such as a nut mixture filling etc. Even go for chocolate fillings and I think, that will be brilliant.
The most popular is the Date filling. You can buy a date paste from middle eastern stores or make your own. I made my own date paste, since I always have date around in my pantry for emergency sugar cravings. From Dates I remember, have you tried – Olive Oil Date and Walnut Cake
Coming back to the Maamoul cookies, these are just like shortbread cookies or nankhatai cookies and they keep nicely for up to a month stored in an airtight container at room temperature. The texture is buttery soft with a delicious date paste. Traditionally, they are made with a tabbeh (a beautifully carved wooden mold for making maamoul) to make maamoul, and they mold the cookies in their distinctive shapes. But you don’t need molds. You can shape them into regular cookie shapes and fill them with date paste.
Maamoul Date Cookies are an essential part of Easter and Eid respectively in middle east. Stuffed with date paste or nuts, this buttery cookie dates to ancient Egypt. Not only because these cookies are delicious and sure to impress whoever you share them with.
- ½ (115gm) cup ghee
- 1/4 cup (55gm) olive oil or butter
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 TBSP sugar
- 2 TBSP rose water
- 2 to 4 TBSP milk (start with 2 and add as needed)
- 300 gm or 2/3 lb dates medjool, soft, pitted and chopped
- Heat the oven to 350°F.
- Melt the ghee. Add oil and sugar into the ghee
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the ghee and sugar mixture with flour with your fingers.
- Then add the rose water and mix it in. Next add the milk, one tablespoon at a time. Then knead it all into a pliable dough.
- When you add the milk, sometimes it might look like there is too much milk and the dough is sticky. But when you keep mixing it in, the milk gets absorbed.
- Let the dough rest for a half-hour. Then roll out portions of the dough into smooth balls.
- Blend the medjool dates in a food processor into a smooth mixture and then roll them into small balls.
Shaping of Maamoul cookies
- Take a dough ball and flatten it. Hold it in the center of your palm and cup it. Place a date ball in the center. Bring the edges of the dough together. Pinch the dough to seal well and then smoothen it out. Press it into a rounded ball.
- Place these cookies on a large baking sheet.
- Make sure to keep enough space between them.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Do not let the cookies over bake or turn too brown.
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