Makroud – Date and Sesame Biscuits

Makroud and Qamar el Deen

I wanted to make a traditional Ramadan dessert this month, a recipe that called for mahleb, which is an aromatic spice made from the seeds of the St Lucie Cherry (Prunus mahaleb). The stones are cracked to extract the seed kernel, which is ground to a powder before it is used. It adds a lovely flavor of bitter almond and cherry to breads, cakes and biscuits.

I found a perfect date and sesame biscuit recipe called Makroud that is made by Israeli Muslims and Palestinians. There are several variations of Makroud that are also made in Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco, but this version is not as sweet.

Mr BT and I would like to wish all of our Muslim friends Ramadan Kareem.

Makroud

Makroud – Date and Sesame Biscuits

Yield: 70 to 80 biscuits

(Date and Sesame Biscuits)

Adapted recipe from the Safadi Family of Nazareth in The Book of New Israeli Food: A Culinary Journey by Janna Gur

For the dough:

500g (3-1/2 cups) whole wheat flour

15g (1/2 oz) fresh yeast

240ml (1 cup) corn oil

120ml (1/2 cup) olive oil

2 teaspoons ground cardamom

1/2 tablespoon mahleb, freshly ground in a mortar

220ml (1 cup) lukewarm water

For the filling:

500g (1lb 2oz) pressed pitted dates

60ml (1/4 cup) corn oil

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Pinch ground cloves

For the coating:

450g (1lb) sesame seeds

For the dough:

Place the flour, crumbled yeast and spices in a large bowl. Add the corn and olive oils and stir until well combined. Gradually add the water and knead the dough for 2-3 minutes into a soft smooth dough. Set aside.

For the filling:

Mix the pressed dates with the oil and spices until it becomes a soft, malleable paste.

To assemble:

Divide the dough into balls the size of a fist and divide the date paste into the same number of balls. Both the dough and the date balls may be dripping with oil: this is normal.

Preheat the oven to 220C (425F).

On a large work surface, sprinkle a generous amount of sesame seeds. Flatten a ball of dough into a round the size of a pita. Flatten out a date ball and place it on top of the dough. Sprinkle some sesame seeds on top and turn the dough over and roll out to the size of a dinner plate. The sesame seeds will prevent the dates from sticking to the work surface. Turn the dough over again, date side up and roll the dough to form a log shape. Repeat with the remainder.

Cut the logs into 5cm-wide (2-inch) biscuits and place on baking sheets. You do not have to place them too far apart because they do not spread. Bake for 10 minutes until they are golden brown. Serve slightly cooled or store up to a month in a sealed container.

http://www.baronesstapuzina.com/2010/08/16/makroud-date-and-sesame-biscuits/

Dinner Under the Stars

The beginning of last week we were invited to a friend’s house for dinner. We had delicious dinner in their lovely Sukkah. I forgot to bring my camera, but will update this post when my friend sends me the pictures we took using her camera.

Our friend Miriam makes delicious wines using grapes, other fruits and herbs. We had the honor of having her cabernet sauvignon, strawberry and summer wines, which is made from pea pods. Yes folks, you read it correctly, pea pods. It was delicious and tasted quite fruity; very difficult to describe without sounding a bit pretentious. The strawberry wine was a little fizzy and tasted as if you were biting into a giant, luscious and ripe strawberry. Yum.

We closed the meal with delicious lemon cakes that her daughter made and the Kritika Patouthia biscuits and mango-nectarine sorbet that my husband and I made.

Kritika Patouthia are Greek biscuits from the island of Crete. They are filled with ground almonds, ground walnuts, sesame seeds and honey and are typically rolled in icing (powdered) sugar. I decided that they were sweet enough and omitted the icing sugar. These cookies are delicious and went well with the last of the summer mango-nectarine sorbet. I came up with this recipe when I didn’t have enough mangoes to make sorbet. The nectarines work quite well with the mango and do not get lost with the strong mango flavour.

Print
Kritika Patouthia
Servings: 5 to 6 dozen
Ingredients
  • Dough:
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons water
  • 4 tablespoons orange juice
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 6 tablespoons white sugar
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Filling:
  • 1 cup ground walnuts
  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 1 cup sesame seeds
  • 1 cup honey
  • Confectioners' sugar
  • Orange flower water or orange juice for sprinkling
Instructions
  1. Mix together olive oil, water, orange juice, lemon juice and sugar. Set aside. In a large bowl sift together flour, baking soda and salt. Add olive oil mixture to flour mixture.
  2. On a floured surface, work and knead to a smooth dough. Cover dough (you can place the empty bowl over it) and let dough rest for an hour.
  3. While dough is resting, make filling.
  4. To Make Filling:
  5. Combine ground walnuts, ground almonds, sesame seeds and honey together in a bowl. Mix until well coated.
  6. Preheat oven to 350F (180C).
  7. Sesame Almond Walnut Filling
  8. Roll out dough to about 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into 3 inch squares. Place 1 heaping teaspoon of filling in center of each square.
  9. fold up
  10. Moisten edges with orange flower water or orange juice and cover the filling by folding in the four corners and pressing them firmly together in the center.
  11. Bake for about 25 minutes. While cookies are still warm, sprinkle lightly with orange flower water or orange juice and dip in a bowl of confectioners' sugar.

Mango and Nectarine

Print
Kritika Patouthia
Servings: 5 to 6 dozen
Ingredients
  • Dough:
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons water
  • 4 tablespoons orange juice
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 6 tablespoons white sugar
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Filling:
  • 1 cup ground walnuts
  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 1 cup sesame seeds
  • 1 cup honey
  • Confectioners' sugar
  • Orange flower water or orange juice for sprinkling
Instructions
  1. Mix together olive oil, water, orange juice, lemon juice and sugar. Set aside. In a large bowl sift together flour, baking soda and salt. Add olive oil mixture to flour mixture.
  2. On a floured surface, work and knead to a smooth dough. Cover dough (you can place the empty bowl over it) and let dough rest for an hour.
  3. While dough is resting, make filling.
  4. To Make Filling:
  5. Combine ground walnuts, ground almonds, sesame seeds and honey together in a bowl. Mix until well coated.
  6. Preheat oven to 350F (180C).
  7. Sesame Almond Walnut Filling
  8. Roll out dough to about 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into 3 inch squares. Place 1 heaping teaspoon of filling in center of each square.
  9. fold up
  10. Moisten edges with orange flower water or orange juice and cover the filling by folding in the four corners and pressing them firmly together in the center.
  11. Bake for about 25 minutes. While cookies are still warm, sprinkle lightly with orange flower water or orange juice and dip in a bowl of confectioners' sugar.

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish – Red Mullet

Friday night we decided to have fish, so I made my take on Fish and Chips.

I use all types of fish filets for shallow frying, such as cod, halibut and flounder. On Friday, I used red mullet, or barbounia as it is called in Hebrew. We had the following:

Cocktail hour: Mango-Pineapple Caipirinha

Red Mullet with a Panko-Sesame, Oregano and Parsley Crust

Crushed Potatoes with Chives, Garlic, and Yogurt

Green peas

Heilbronner Stiftsberg Riesling 2005

Leftover Quince Tart

Print
Red Mullet with a Panko-Sesame, Oregano and Parsley Crust
Ingredients
  • 350 g 3/4lb small or 4 medium red mullet filets
  • 2 cups panko crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano or thyme
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon water
Instructions
  1. Panko Crumbs
  2. In a plate, mix the panko crumbs, sesame seeds, parsley, oregano and thyme. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg, yogurt and water.
  3. Ready for Frying
  4. Place the fish in the egg mixture and mix until the fish is thoroughly coated and then dip in the panko mixture until well coated. Cook the fish in about 25mm (1 inch) of hot oil for approximately two to three minutes on each side or until flaky. Drain on a paper towel and serve immediately.
Related Posts with Thumbnails