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Maamoul Date Cookies

I often reminisce about the pastries from my childhood. I have fond memories of my mother and grandmother baking every weekend and sharing something sweet with the family.  

maamoul

This Ramadan I wanted to try and make maamoul. I set out to replicate the maamoul from my childhood and found that our family recipe was for a HUGE batch… like 8 dozen cookies! Cutting the recipe in half would still give me far more than I would need (especially for my first time!). I decided to test a few variations of the family recipes and come up with a batch that would make about two dozen cookies! 

First, I need a maamoul mold. I got mine here

maamoul molds

I did some more research on maamoul and found there was significant differences in recipes ranging from yeast based doughs to those leavened with baking powder. I also found some recipe using all purpose flour, some with a portion AP flour and the other a variation of semolina with differing coarseness. 

maamoul

After testing the recipe with farina, I decided fine semolina brought a more smooth texture.

To help provide a visual here is a video of my process: 

**After viewing my Snapchat (@AmandasPlate) my mom informed me that when she makes Maamoul, she uses one piece of the dough and wraps it around the date filling!

Maamoul Date Cookies

Ingredients
  

  • 3 cups Fine Semolina (milled wheat flour/ can be found at middle eastern stores)
  • 1/2 cup All Purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 cup ghee, clarified butter
  • 1/2 cup lukewarm water
  • 1/3 cup whole milk

Filling

  • 3 cups pitted, softened dates or 8 oz date paste
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon orange blossom water
  • powdered sugar for dusting the tops after baking optional

Instructions
 

  • Blend dates together in a food processor with spices and 1 tablespoon oil until smooth. Add orange blossom water. Roll 1 tablespoon dates into 24 small balls.
    In a small bowl, mix yeast in water and allow to stand for 3 minutes.In a stand mixer with paddle attachment, mix together farina, AP flour, salt, sugar and butter.
    Add the yeast and water and milk to the bowl and mix until dough forms.
    Allow dough to rest for 1 hour.Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
    Using mold, press dough into the center, place date ball in the center of the dough.
    Place a second smaller piece of dough over the top of the date, cover the filling.Tap the mold until the dough releases.Place on parchment lined baking sheet.
    Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

maamoul

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43 Comments

  1. I’m going to try this recipe this eid!! I like to put a walnut in the middle of the date filling to give it a little crunch!

  2. I’ve been experimenting with different ma’amoul recipes, and have one Palestinian (my favorite so far, with mahlab and nigella in the dough) and one Syrian. Can you tell me where your family’s recipe comes from?

    I’ve got the dough resting in the kitchen and look forward to trying them alongside the Palestinian ones. Yum!
    Kalia

    1. This is my take on a Lebanese version of the dessert! I love adding the mahlab into the dough but decided to leave it out in the recipe as it is not easy to find. Best to you 🙂

  3. I made these for Easter this year for my husband and children who are of Lebanese and Syrian descent. Thank you for the recipe I’ve tried several other recipes and the texture of the dough was too crumbly or gritty but this recipe turned out great! I did not have molds so I formed them into 1 1/2 inch balls and used a toothpick for a simple design on the top. My children had much fun helping to make maamoul!

  4. Hi I have made them and they were good thanks but now I want to make them with date filling but my husband says it taste better with yansoon. And I don’t have that now can I make it without that spice fir the date filling.

  5. hi i am moslem from Indonesia,this mamool cookies is similar with our cookies, but the filing is from pineapple. n we dont use yeast for the dough. is more like a pie crust

  6. I want to make these but don’t have any orange blossom water.. Any suggestions for a replacement? Would rose water be a good supplement, or should I just leave it out? What about syrup?

  7. Hi Amanda, can I use baking dates instead of individual dates? If so, what is the ratio between them? (I.e. 3 cups dates to 1 package 13oz baking dates)

    Thank you so much!

    1. I just made these and they are wonderful! I somehow ended up making 50 cookies! And I only had a little bit of my 13oz baking dates package left. Thanks, Amanda!

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