Makroutes (ma-kroots)

bathing in honey...

This is one of my preferred North Africa n treats. I love these things and since moving from France, I have learnt to make them… I no longer have my Algerian friends bringing me some during their Ramadan.

I made these to show off at our office bake off. I didn’t win, but my British colleagues got to taste something different and only 1 makroute was left. I am actually really proud of them for trying it.

I have used here ramekins to measure most things, but you can use a glass it is quicker than using scales (hater those) and saves space on the work top.

To make these, you will need:

1 ingredients

1 ingredients

  • 4 ramekins of medium semolina
  • 1 ramekin of plain flour                
  • 1 ramekin of milk – whole milk or soya milk for vegetarians
  • 1 spoon of sugar, 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 ramekin of lukewarm honey
  • 4 caps of orange blossom water
  • 40 dates unstoned.

 Start by making a dates paste:

  1. Remove the stone in the dates and peel the skin if you are not fan… I couldn’t be bothered so kept the skin on.
  2. Cook them for 5 minutes in a microwave dish with 4 table spoons of water. Leave to cool then, mash with a fork. Dates are quite stringy so I recommend you use a hand blender to obtain a smooth paste.
  3. Scoop the paste out of the bowl and wrap in cling film. Leave aside.

 The semolina paste:

2 ready semolina and dates paste

2 ready semolina and dates paste

In a deep bowl, put the semolina, flour, milk, blossom water sugar and salt. Work the paste with your hands until obtaining a firm paste. Wrap into cling film and leave to rest for an hour with the date paste.

  Shaping the makroutes:

  1. After the hour cut the past in to 4 doughs and roll as if shaping a small baguette.
  2.  Now slice the baguette like shape in two; on one side, put some of the date paste, then cover completely holding in the date paste with no way to escape.
  3. Now, with a knife cut the “sandwich” in small lozenges.
  4. Repeat the last two operations until all the doughs are in lozenges.
3 making the "sandwiches"

3 making the “sandwiches”

4 cutting lozenges

4 cutting lozenges

5 after frying drop into honey

5 after frying drop into honey

 Frying the lozenges:

  1. It would be ideal to fry them in a chip pan. If you do not have one, pour a litre of vegetable oil in a deep pan, leave it on the fire until the oil is really hot.
  2.  Always put only 1 lozenge in the oil to see if it is hot enough. If you judge that the oil is hot enough, then fry about 15 lozenges at a time. It will take a bout 4 minutes to cook and brown.
  3. Remove from the oil and into the honey. Repeat the operation until it is all done.

    6 served here with green tea

    6 served here with green tea

the more the makroutes absorb honey, the better.

 Now remove from the honey and put a grid to drain. It is all ready.

 Serve with a jasmine tea or vanilla ice cream.



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