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A blue plate full of chebakia cookies sprinkled with sesame seeds with cups of Moroccan tea on the side.
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5 from 1 vote

Chebakia

A wonderful fragrant Moroccan cookies recipe that is a staple especially during Ramadan. Strips of sesame dough shaped like a flower, fried and drenched in honey So tasty.
Prep Time1 hr 25 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Dripping excess honey:2 hrs
Total Time2 hrs 15 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Mediterranean, Middle East, Moroccan
Diet: Halal, Vegetarian
Servings: 34 cookie
Calories: 113kcal
Author: Amira

Ingredients

  • 1 Tablespoon orange blossom water
  • A pinch of saffron
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds (30g) toasted
  • 2 cups all purpose flour (250g)
  • 1/4 cup almond meal (20g)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 2g
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground anise.
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground fennel.
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon.
  • 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons oil vegetable/corn or sunflower
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
  • Warm Water depends on your dough.
  • Oil for frying
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cup honey.

Instructions

  • Pour orange blossom water in a small bowl. Rub saffron threads with your fingers to grind them a bit then sprinkle them on top of the bowl and let it bloom.
  • In a small food processor grind the sesame seeds until the grains become moist and easy to pack. Do not overdo it or the sesame seeds will turn into paste.
  • In a deep bowl, or your mixer bowl, sift flour, almond meal, ground sesame.
  • Add salt, baking powder, fennel, anise and cinnamon.
  • Pour melted butter and oil and start kneading with your hands or using your mixer.
  • When the flour is moist all over, add the egg yolk, vinegar, and saffron with its water then mix.
  • Gradually add water and knead until you get a soft consistent dough. Take it out to your working surface and knead by hand for a few minutes.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rest for just 10 minutes.
  • Divide the dough into 4 parts, take one part to your working surface covering the rest with plastic wrap.
  • Lightly flour your work surface if necessary and roll out the first part into a rectangle of about 3mm thickness.
  • Fold one of the short ends of your rectangle into the middle, then do the other side until the edges touch. Fold to form a long rectangle of four layers.
  • Roll with your rolling pin as thin as humanely possible.
  • Using a fluted pastry cutter cut the edges to form a uniform rectangle about 42-45cm (17-18 inches ) length.
  • Cut the rectangle into strips of about 2cm (3/4 inch) wide.
  • Using a small cup, take one strip and roll it around the cup base. We aim to roll it two and a half times around the cup base.
  • Take the cup out and pinch the sides to shape it into an eye shaped pastry.
  • With a knife separate the middle strip.
  • Place the Chebakia on a baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap until you are done with the whole dough.
  • Deep Fry:
  • Heat oil on medium heat when oil is ready reduce heat a notch.
  • Hold the Chebakia by its ends pressing them to make sure they are glues together then put in the oil. Do not overcrowd the pan.
  • Fry until lightly browned on both sides.
  • Pour honey into a wide bowl
  • Take the Chebakia out and place them in the honey carefully, they should sizzle.
  • Wait for a minute then turn the Chebakia to the other side. Let them be for another minute then take them out into a strainer placed over a bowl to drip excess honey.
  • Let them cool completely then garnish with more sesame seeds.

Notes

  • If you do not have almond meal you can use sesame seeds instead increasing the sesame seeds amount in the recipe.
  • Anise, fennel and cinnamon are used for flavoring the recipe so feel free to substitute one for another if you do not have or like any of them.
  • My dough took a little less than 1/3 cup of warm water. Some people use a pasta machine set to a narrow setting so the Chebakia is super thin. I have found that this method made the process too complicated and the dough got really long and tiring to work with. But you might want to try it anyways, if you doو do not go to the narrowest setting though, a 3 or 4 is better than 2.
  • I liked soaking Chebakia in honey, some people make a super thick simple syrup. I also liked leaving my Chebakia to drip for at least 4 hours to get all excess honey out and helping it get more crisp.
  • I did not flavor my honey with orange blossom water but if you want to, heat the honey a bit then mix in the orange blossom water and let it cool completely.
  • Some people like to heat up the honey before soaking the Chebakia in, I did not do that as this is what I have seen authentic Moroccan cooks do. The point here is to make sure that they sizzle and hiss when you place them in the honey.
  • When placing the chebakia in the honey do not toss them with the spoon immediately, wait for them to cool down of a minute or two so they will not break apart in the honey. Better if you can scoop the honey over the chebakia.
  • Also be careful when removing the chebakia from the honey to a colander to drip excess honey as they will still be delicate. They harden and become more manageable as they cool down.
  • Make Ahead:
    • You can place shaped Chebakia in the fridge for up to 3 days before frying.
    • You can also freeze them and when ready to fry take them out and fry from frozen, no need to thaw.
  • Storage:
    • Fried Chebakia can stay in room temperature for a month. You can also freeze them for up to 4 months.
  • Serve with: Chebakia usually served with Harira during Ramadan.
  • Sources: I got the cup idea from this youtube video here.
  • Please check the nutrition disclaimer policy.

Nutrition

Calories: 113kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 23mg | Potassium: 23mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 69IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 1mg