These cookies are made in my mom's home village of Baalbek, in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, a week before Easter. They are such a hit, everyone asks for the recipe. They taste good and they're not hard to prepare, especially if you add the right ingredients.

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Recipe Summary

prep:
2 hrs
cook:
10 mins
additional:
8 hrs
total:
10 hrs 10 mins
Servings:
60
Yield:
60 cookies
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Ingredients

60
Original recipe yields 60 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • In a small saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Stir in sugar and water; continue stirring to dissolve sugar. Do not boil. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.

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  • Measure flours into a large bowl. Add melted butter, yeast, spices, and sesame seeds; stir slowly for about 10 minutes to thoroughly blend ingredients. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave dough in bowl to rest for 1 hour.

  • Prepare 3 baking sheets with cooking spray or parchment paper. In a small bowl, pour the rose water and orange flower water. Pour the warm water in to a second small bowl. Working on a floured board, pull off about 1 cup of dough. Dip your fingers first in the warm water and knead the dough a few minutes; then dip the dough in the flower water and knead it again until the dough is soft and pliable.

  • Use the palm of your hand to roll the ball of dough into a rope 12 inches long and 1 inch in diameter. Cut the rope in half and make a wreath-shaped cookie with each one, pinching the ends together. Place on a baking sheet. When you have filled a baking sheet, cover the cookies with a clean towel and refrigerate overnight to rest the dough.

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Remove baking sheets from the refrigerator to warm up while the oven preheats. Bake cookies in the preheated oven until golden brown, about 15 minutes.

Editor's Note:

Mahleb is a spice made from ground black cherry pits (from a type of tree that grows in the Near East, not North America). Used to flavor baked goods with a subtle, sweet/nutty taste, it can be found in Greek or Middle Eastern ethnic markets.

Nutrition Facts

198 calories; protein 2g 4% DV; carbohydrates 26.4g 9% DV; fat 9.7g 15% DV; cholesterol 24.4mg 8% DV; sodium 66.3mg 3% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (1)

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4 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 2
  • 4 star values: 1
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 4 stars
04/24/2011
this is a good recipe,in Lebanon we make big quatity to serve the neighbours and guests on easter day. Read More
(13)