Mamool Walnut Cookies Recipe

  • 3 pounds pistachio or walnuts, shelled and coarsely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons butter, ghee or corn oil
  • 3 tablespoons rose water
  • 3 tablespoons orange blossom water
  • 1 cup superfine sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch ground cloves
  • 2 pounds fine semolina flour
  • 1 pound white farina
  • 1 pound all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon mastic
  • 1 tablespoon mahlab
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 cups milk or orange blossom water
  • Confectioners' sugar for dusting
  1. Make the filling: In a large bowl, combine the nuts with the butter, rose water, orange blossom water, sugar, cinnamon and cloves; stir to thoroughly coat the nuts. Set aside.
  2. Make the dough: In a large bowl, combine the semolina, farina and flour. Sprinkle the mastic and mahlab over the dry ingredients. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and add the yeast and sugar to the well. Add 3 tablespoons warm water to the yeast mixture and let sit until it begins to foam, about 1 minute. Pour in the milk and, with a fork, gradually mix the wet and dry ingredients together until a dough forms.
  3. Transfer the dough to a clean work surface and knead until it is pillow soft and workable. If the dough becomes too stiff to work with, gradually sprinkle in water to bring it to a workable consistency. Return the dough to the bowl and set aside on the counter for 1 hour, covering the bowl with a clean kitchen towel to prevent the dough from drying out as you shape the cookies.
  4. Preheat the oven to 370°F. Prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Place about 3 tablespoons dough in the palm of one hand and use the other palm to roll it into a ball. Make an indentation in the ball with your finger. Spoon 1 1/2 tablespoons of the nut mixture into the indentation, then bring the edges of the dough up around the filling. Pinch the edges all around to seal in the filling. Flip the cookie over into the other hand, seam-side down, and gently press until the seam side is flattened. Place the cookie on a prepared baking sheet and repeat with the remaining dough.
  6. Bake until the cookies are pale blond, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. The cookies can be stored at room temperature for 2 days; they will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 2 weeks or in the freezer up to 3 months. Before serving, dust liberally with confectioners' sugar.