Date Roulade

Ma'amul in half the time


I really like ma'amul cookies, which consist of crumbly pastry filled with date paste. They are seriously yummy, but each one must be filled individually, and they're usually finished with a special pattern. This lazy version is a filled roulade cut into loads of cookies - ma'amul in half the time. This is my beloved older sister Yasmin's recipe.


For the filling
● 300g pitted dates (I prefer medjool, roughly chopped
● 45ml vegetable oil
● 45ml water
● 1 tsp ground cardamom or finely grated unwaxed orange zest (optional)

For the dough
● 250g plain flour, plus extra for dusting if needed
● 1 tsp baking powder
● Pinch of salt
● 30g granulated sugar
● 90g very soft butter (not melted)
● 50ml vegetable oil
● 50ml milk
● 1 tsp vanilla extract
● Icing sugar, for dusting


● Preheat your oven to 190°C/170°C fan and line a baking tray with baking parchment.

● Forthe filling, blend all the ingredients until you have a smooth texture with no visible date skin.

● For the dough, mix all the dough ingredients together in a mixing bowl until they have all combined to a soft and slightly sticky dough. There's no need to use an electric mixer - it's very easy to do by hand. The mixture will start off looking too wet, but keep kneading and the dough will absorb all the liquid.

● Roll out the dough between two pieces of baking parchment to a thin rectangle about 40cm x 25cm in size, and 3mmthick - dust the paper with flour if it sticks.

● Take off the top sheet of parchment and spread the filling on to the dough. If it gets too sticky, dip your spoon in water from time to time. Starting from the one long side, roll the dough into a roulade, using the parchment to help you roll. Then simply lift the parchment and separate the dough from it, and roll the dough a little more to seal the seam underneath the roulade.

● Transfer the roulade to the lined baking tray. Score it at 1.5cm intervals using a sharp knife - to make it easier to cut the roulade after baking. Bake for 30–40 minutes until golden brown.

● Remove from the oven and cool for about 15 minutes. Then dust with icing sugar and slice the roulade where you marked it before baking.

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