baklava cookies baklava cookies Israeli Kitchen This recipe turns traditional baklava upside-down. (Photo: Miriam Kresh)

Baklava cookies

Everyone's favorite Mediterranean dessert, simplified in cookie form.

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  • Yield: About 25 cookies
  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 28 minutes

Do you adore baklava, but don’t want to spend time handling delicate phyllo dough? Baklava cookies are the answer. Basically a sugar cookie recipe, it gives you the sweet, nutty, baklava taste you’re seeking, with a difference, of course. Unlike the crisp, crackly texture of the traditional baklava crust, the cookie stays tender yet firm. The topping delivers the flavor of spiced nuts that makes baklava so tempting.

When I bake these cookies, the dough is too loose to roll into a ball as usual sugar cookies do. I just push about two teaspoons of dough off a mixing spoon onto the baking sheet, and the result is as you see it in the photograph above.

I recommend snacking on these delicious cookies with a glass of cold milk. After all, cookies and milk … they’re made to go together.

Ingredients

    For dough:

  • 2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, room temperature
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For nut topping:

  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons runny honey
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped shelled nuts: pistachios, walnuts pine nuts, hazelnuts or any mixture of them
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).

Prepare two baking sheets with baking parchment (or bake three batches, one at a time).

Prepare the topping:

Melt the butter over medium heat. Add the powdered sugar and the honey. Stir and remove from heat when the mixture is smooth and starting to bubble. Add the nuts and spices; mix well.

Prepare the cookies:

Mix flour and baking soda.

Cream sugar and butter.

Add egg and vanilla; mix well.

Add flour mixture gradually until all is incorporated.

Take about 2 tablespoons of dough and drop it onto the lined baking sheet. (If the dough is firm enough, roll each portion into a ball.) Set the dough balls an inch apart.

Bake the cookies for no longer than 8 minutes. Remove from the oven while they’re still somewhat soft.

With a tablespoon, lightly press the centers of the cookies to create a shallow depression in each.

Fill the wells with topping; about 3/4 teaspoons each.

Return the cookies to the oven and bake another 2 minutes, or until the edges are golden.

Cool the cookies on a rack and serve.

Related Topics: Baking, Desserts, Mediterranean

Recipes from the Israeli KitchenRecipes from the Israeli Kitchen
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