Maamoul Date Cookies (معمول بالتمر) are very famous traditional Middle Eastern cookies that have been around for generations. They are extremely delicious and served during many occasions. They are soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside.
WHAT ARE MAALOUL DATE COOKIES (معمول بالتمر)?
Maamoul is usually the general term of this type of cookie. It is filled with either Dates, Pistachios, Walnuts, Pecans and even some people do fill them with dried fruits like figs. But my favorites are the Date and Pistachio filled Maamouls. Maamoul Cookies are known across the Middle East and even in Greece. They are served in homes through out the year and most famous during religious holidays such as Christmas, Ramadan, Lent and Easter.
HOW ARE THE MAAMOUL DATE COOKIES SERVED (معمول بالتمر)?
You can enjoy the Maamoul cookies as a snack at any time. Most people love having them with Turkish coffee (Arabic coffee), a cup of regular coffee or tea. Some like it with juice. I prefer tea or coffee. But most of the time I am always snacking on them on the go and don’t drink anything when eating them. I must warn you, these cookies are addictive. Especially the date ones. I always make a huge batch and snack on them the whole week.
The Maamoul cookies are made in molds that come in different shapes and patterns. You can find them at most Middles Eastern grocery stores or even online. Certain shapes are used for each of the types of Maamoul so people recognize what type of filling is inside. The patterns on them can be different. The mold have different patterns on them so whatever you find is fine. I have over 5 different patterns just for the date ones. Usually I like that wooden ones with deeper engravings on them so that the pattern comes out clear after you press it down to form it’s shape.
HOW TO MAKE THE MAAMOUL DATE COOKIES (معمول بالتمر):
Start with the dough. Place all the ingredients in a bowl and knead very well with your hand. You can also use a cake stand mixer, which is what I do and just use a flat cake attachment and mix it slowly until they are well incorporated together. Cover and let the dough rest for 2 hours. Most people leave it overnight, but I am never that patient. It comes out perfect just the way I make it. No need to wait. Once the time is done, you form them into ball portions and cover them (Shown in the second photo)
Meanwhile, you can prepare the filling. I usually use the date paste that’s at the Middle Eastern store because it tastes great and it’s easier. It’s by a brand called ZIYAD but you can buy whatever you find. If you cant find that, you can also buy some soft Medjoul dates, take the seeds out and blend them in a processer to pure it up. In a bowl place the date filling ingredients and mix well. You will then form them into a ball shape to make the portions. I use a regular teaspoon to portion them out. So one full teaspoon, I have shown that in the photo for you. The reason I portion them is because it makes things go a lot faster.
When you have everything ready, press a piece of the dough into a flat shape, then add the date in the middle and wrap the dough around it to cover the date completely. Press the ball shaped dough well into the mold and the tap the mold on the counter so it falls out, catching it with your other hand. Some people place the ball dough on the counter and press the mold over it to shape it. I found that it doesn’t work well for me. The imprints don’t come out as great.
Once that part is done, lay the pieces on a sheet pan with parchment paper or a non-stick pan until you finish the rest of the balls. Some brush the cookies with egg whites before baking them to give them a nice glossy look. I don’t do that. I just give it a little spray of oil with PAM or any of other oil spray and I bake them in the oven for 20 minutes. Then I broil the top for a few more minutes so they can get the golden color on the top. But be careful and make sure your eye is on them when you broil them so they don’t burn. I have burned them before trust me. But I still ate them 😀
You can then let the Maamoul Date Cookies (معمول بالتمر) cool at room temperature and store them in an air tight container. They will last at their best for 1 week at least. I prefer eating them when they are cool but I can never wait and always sneak and eat one while they are hot.
I hope you enjoy them. They are truly super delicious and such a great snack. My kids love them. The only sugar in them is natural sugar from the dates. Don’t worry too much when you eat them. Be sure to let me know if you liked these yummy cookies and leave a rating on my recipe card. You can also share and save it to your Pinterest or Facebook feed. Tag me on my Instagram so I can repost your delicious Maamoul Date Cookies!
OTHER RECIPES YOU MAY LIKE:
Pistachio Maamoul Cookies (معمول بالتمر)
- 3 cups coarse semolina
- 2 cups fine semolina ferkha
- 1 cup flour
- 1.5 cup butter (melted)
- 1/2 cup warm milk
- 1/4 cup water
- 3 tbsp. orange blossoms water ma-zaher
- 2 tsp baking powder
- DATE FILLING:
- 2 cups of pureed dates
- 1/4 cup fine coconut flakes
- 1 tbsp. rose water
- Oil Spray
- Maamoul mold
Place all the ingredients in a bowl and knead very well with your hand. You can also use a cake stand mixer, using a flat cake attachment or dough attachment. Mix slowly until they are well incorporated together. Cover and let the dough rest for 2 hours. While you wait for the dough to rest, prepare the filling by mixing the ingredients together.
Once the time is up, form the dough into ball portions and cover them to prevent drying.
Press a piece of the dough into a flat shape, then add a tablespoon of date filling in the middle and wrap the dough around it to cover the filling completely.
Press the ball shaped dough well into the mold and the tap the mold on the counter so it falls out.
Once that part is done, lay the pieces on a sheet pan with parchment paper or a non-stick pan until you finish the rest of the balls.
Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 minutes.
Store in an air tight container.