Lebanese Maamoul: Date & Nut Stuffed Cookies {معمول}

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Recipe Updated 2018!

The Maamoul stuffed cookie is a rose water infused, butter semolina cookie, traditionally made in times of celebration. The cookies are stuffed and pressed into unique molds each shaped a little differently to hint as to what’s inside. The three most authentic stuffings are date, walnut and pistachio.

We have been testing out our recipe to create a lighter more crumbly cookie that required less rest time. One of the first challenges we faced was successfully using a mold with a softer dough. We found that after switching from oiling the mold to dusting it with flour and having many failed attempts, that there is nothing more frustrating for a baker than a maamoul stuck in a mold. It took some trail and error and a few tears but it was finally discovered that the best way to mold a softer dough is by pressing it in semolina first! Sometimes you need to give the mold a little tap to release the cookie but we found that with this method that’s seldom the case.

This recipe yields about 3 dozen maamoul depending on the size of your mold. You might look at that and think that’s too many cookies, and that’s fine you can easily half the recipe. We on the other hand usually double or triple the recipe.

When making the maamoul simplify the process by using a kitchen scale. you want a stuffing to crust ratio of a little over double crust to stuffing. For example when making the date stuffed cookies we used 20 g crust to 8 gram date. We keep the scale in font of us the entire time we’re prepping the maamoul which takes the guess work out of molding and makes a uniform cookie every time.

Prep Time: 1 hour
Dough Rest Time:
 40 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 3 Dozen

Maamool Dough

  • 1.5 cups semolina #2
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp mahlab
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup butter- at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp rose water
  • 0.5 cup semolina #2 for pressing
  • 1/4 cup confectioner sugar for dusting
    nut stuffed maamoul

Date Stuffing

  • 2 cup chopped pitted dates
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp orange blossom water
  • 1 tsp rose water

Nut Stuffing

  • 2 cups walnuts/ pistachios, raw, shelled
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp orange blossom water
  • 1 tsp rose water

Directions

1. Mix semolina, flour, spices (nutmeg, mahlab) and sugar together in a mixing bowl.
2. Cut butter into mixture until a fine and even consistency is formed, rest dough for 10 minutes before moving on to next step.
3. Add 1 Tbsp rose water and knead into dough to from soft ball.
Tip: If dough feels dry slowly add more rose water 1 tsp at a time.

5. Let dough rest for 30 minutes in cool space or refrigerate.
6. Prepare stuffing mixtures:

Date mixture:
1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse to smooth consistency
2. Form into small balls to stuff into dough – this will save time later!
*Tip: Wetting hands when forming balls simplifies this process!

Nut mixture:
1. Place ingredients in food processor and pulse to semi-coarse consistency. Set aside.
2. Add the sugar, rose water and blossom water and mix together

7. After dough has rested, divide dough into equal size balls.
Tip: Use a scale to weigh even proportions of dough and stuffing to get consistent results.

 

Stuffing the cookies:

8. Form cavity in dough ball and place prepared date balls inside. If using nut mixture, spoon nut mixture inside.
9. Gently close up dough ball and seal. If using an oval mold ( usually for pistachio maamoul) it is easier to gently mold dough ball into an egg shape before placing in mold. In the case of large date maamoul mold an easy tip is to divide dough ball in two and flatten into circular pancake shapes and put flattened date balls in the middle. Seal in date stuffing to form disc shape before placing in mold.
10. Dip dough into semolina before gently pressing into mold.
11. Tap mold onto clean surface to remove maamoul and place maamoul onto baking sheet.
13. Bake at 350 for approximately 20 minutes. When making nut maamoul, avoid browning, alternatively add 5 minutes for browning of date maamoul.
14. Once cooled sift powdered sugar onto nut stuffed maamoul.
15. Maamoul can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. They can be frozen for up to 3 months.

 

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6 thoughts on “Lebanese Maamoul: Date & Nut Stuffed Cookies {معمول}

    1. Any middle eastern supermarket. Arz on lawrence and pharmacy may carry them! If not try the supermarket on lawrence and warden called nada (I think)

  1. Any clue where I can find a mold in Ottawa? I want an oval one. I tried the Mid-East Food Centre on St. Laurent and the Middle East Bakery on Somerset, no luck! Thanks. 🙂

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