Stuffed Cookies (Ma mul)
Makes about 36

3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp superfine sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tbsp orange flower water
1 tbsp rose water
1 - 5 tbsp milk (as needed)
powdered sugar

Date Filling
3/4 pound pitted soft dates, chopped
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbsp orange flower water
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

First make the filling by cooking the dates, butter, and water in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until a paste forms then add the orange flower water and cinnamon. Set aside to cool.

Preheat the oven to 350. In a large bowl stir together the flour and sugar and then add the butter and use your hands to rub it all together. Add the orange flower and rose waters and enough milk to make a soft dough. Don't be scared to add more milk, my dough was crumbly until I got up to 5 tbsp even though the original recipe suggests you'll need only 1 tbsp.

To make the cookies, take walnut-sized balls of dough and flatten them out into a small round. Put a dab of filling in the middle (I used a 1/2 teaspoon as a scoop) and then fold the edges up into a ball. Flatten the cookies a bit between your hands and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Press the tines of a fork over the top of each cookie to help the powdered sugar stay on later.

Cook for about 20 minutes until pale gold on the bottom. Don't let the cookies brown. Remove cookies to a cooling rack. After they cool down, dust the cookies with powdered sugar using a sieve. Don't be shy with the powdered sugar as the cookies are not super sweet.

-adapted from Recipes & Remembrances from an Eastern Mediterranean Kitchen