Middle Eastern Ma amoul

  • *Makes 30 * *

  • 1 cup semolina *

  • 1 cup plain flour *

  • 1/2 cup sugar *

  • 2 tbsp baking powder *

  • 40g lard *

  • 60g butter *

  • 1 tsp orange blossom water *

  • 1/2 cup pitted dates, chopped *

  • 2 tbsp water *

  • 1/4 cup walnuts, finely chopped *

  • 1 orange, zest only, finely chopped *

  • icing sugar to dust *

Combine semolina, flour, sugar and baking powder in a bowl. Place lard and 40g of the butter in a saucepan over low heat until melted. Pour butter mixture into semolina mixture. Add half the orange blossom water and a little water, and combine until a soft dough. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight to rest. Meanwhile, combine dates, water, remaining butter and other half of orange blossom water in a saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until dates soften. Set aside for 30 minutes to cool. Stir in walnuts and orange zest. Preheat oven to 180C. Roll out two-thirds of the semolina pastry, and press among 30 small round moulds. Press pastry firmly around

bases and sides of moulds, leaving a small hollow in the centre. Spoon date mixture among hollows. Top with remaining pastry and firmly press to enclose filling. Bake in oven for 15 minutes or until lightly golden. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool before turning on to a board to cool completely. Dust with icing sugar.

The West Australian

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