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Barazek: Sesame Cookies

One of the most awaited seasons in Lebanon is Fall. Why? Because it’s the time for simple delicacies to be enjoyed along with a cup of tea, cool weather and a soft blanket. It’s the time of the year where your mothers, aunts and grandmothers are stocking their secret sweets hiding spots with the most delicious treats. Despite a variety of family favorites taking turns throughout the period, one simple yet fulfilling cookie is commonly loved by everyone. Yes, we are talking about the buttery, sweet and crunchy Barazek!
Barazek: Sesame Cookies

Coated with a heavy layer of sesame with a thin, no, extra-thin core brings in an addictive crackle and pop to the soothingly calm autumn evenings. Barazek is popular across the entire Arab region as it is simple and easy to make. It is usually found in tightly packed boxes in most bakeries and around the corner shops. It doesn’t only match ideally with tea but also makes the perfect pair with fragrant turkish coffee. Are you ready to prepare this decadent delight?

PREPARATION TIME AND COOKING TIME: 1h 30min

Serves : 60 cookies


Ingredients you will need


Cookie

  • 500g flour
  • 250g butter or ghee
  • 150g sugar
  • 100ml water
  • 8g powdered milk
  • 5g mahlab
  • Chopped pistachios (optional)

Sesame mix:

  • 400g toasted sesame
  • 100g sugar
  • 150g of apricot jam
  • 100ml water

Equipment

  • Sifter
  • Bowl
  • Baking Pan

Instructions

 

Method

  1. Start by sifting the flour, mahlab and powdered milk in a bowl
  2. Add the butter or the ghee to the dry ingredients and mix by hand to soften the butter until well incorporated
  3. In a separate bowl, melt the sugar in the water and start adding it gradually to the dry mix until a smooth dough takes form
  4. Place the dough in a bowl, cover and let it rest in the fridge for around 30 minutes
  5. In the meantime prepare the topping by mixing together the sesame, sugar, jam and water until the sesame is fully coated
  6. After 30 minutes, split the dough and shape small balls
  7. In the palm of your hand, flatten the balls into thin disks and dip one side of the dough in the sesame mix to coat
  8. Preheat oven on 180C
  9. Oil the pan and place the cookies to bake for approximately 10 minutes until golden and crunchy

Questions and Tips

  1. You can use honey or molasses instead of the apricot jam in the sesame mix. However, a sweet and unique taste is brought by the use of this jam that is commonly used among Lebanese delicacies.
  2. Flatten the discs as thinly as possible orelse the cookies will not come out crunchy despite preserving the same taste.
  3. You can place the unbaked cookies close to one another in the pan as they will barely change in shape or size. This will reduce the need of using several pans especially that this recipe will result in a large quantity of cookies when brought to the correct thickness.
  4. Use softened butter or cubed butter at room temperature and not melted butter for optimal results.

 

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