In a northern neighborhood of Oklahoma City, tucked into an area choked with strip malls, chain stores, gas stations, gated condo communities, and improbable bits and pieces of pasture just waiting to be gobbled up by developers and real estate investors, there’s a middle eastern restaurant called Nunu’s. They are vegan-welcoming in the extreme. I always order their lentil pilaf topped with crisp, fresh romaine lettuce. I only wish I could also order some of their desserts – especially the adorable little cookies, maamouls. But unfortunately, those aren’t vegan-welcoming (which is probably for the best anyway).
I’ve made my own version of Nunu’s cookies, tweaking a Food Network recipe. The result is a tender little hand pie that is filled with a sweet, gingery, orangey date paste that is perfect alongside a cup of tea.
BTW, if you lightly toast them in the toaster oven, you might be tempted to call them Pop-Tarts. And if you don’t have time to make the date filling, use your favorite sugar-free jam or jelly!
Vegan Maamoul (Date-Orange Stuffed Cookies)
- Prep Time: 25
- Cook Time: 30
- Total Time: 55
- Yield: 18 1x
Plump, tender cookies filled with a sweet and spicy mixture of dates, orange, and ginger. These vegan treats have no refined sugar and just a touch of coconut oil.
- 1/2 pound pitted Medjool dates, roughly chopped
- 2 Tbsp. fresh orange juice, or water
- pinch sea salt
- 1” nob of fresh ginger, grated
- zest of 1/2 a large orange
- 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- pinch sea salt
- 3/4 cup non-dairy milk
- 1/2 cup tahini
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1 Tbsp. coconut nectar, or maple syrup
Make the filling
- Preheat the oven to 325-degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Place the filling ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and process until the dates are finely chopped. This will take a few minutes and make a terrible noise. Stand firm! Remove the date mixture from the bowl and set aside.
- Clean out the food processor bowl.
Make the dough
- Put the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to combine.
- In a bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the milk, tahini, coconut oil, and coconut nectar. With the food processor running, pour in the milk mixture until a ball is formed. You may need to scrape down the sides a few times.
Make the maamoul
- Sprinkle flour over your work surface and pat the dough into a circle. Flour the top. Roll the dough to about 1/4-inch thick and using a 3-inch round cutter, cut out as many circles as you can. Place them on the prepared baking sheet.
- Roll up the scrapes, roll out, and cut more circles until you’ve used up as much dough as you can. You’re aiming for 36 circles.
- Using a teaspoon, scoop up the date mixture and place in the center on one of the dough circles. Continue until you’ve divided the date mixture between 18 of the dough circles. Lightly moisten the edges of the dough circles and taking the “plain” dough circles, place them on top of the date-filled dough circles. Crimp the edges with the tines of a fork and pierce the tops a few times.
- Bake the maamoul for about 30 minutes, or until lightly browned on top. Let cool for a few minutes on the pans, then carefully remove the cookies and place on wire racks to cool completely.
- The dough should be fairly sticky. However, it should be firm enough that when you coat your work surface with flour, you should be able to roll out the dough. If not, add more flour when processing – a little at a time – until the dough is tacky but manageable.
Waw, Anne! wonderful beautiful photos & those stuffed cookies look so delightful & freaking tasty too!
I love the used ingredients in here too! 🙂 MMM!
Thanks, Sophie! I’m pretty happy about how they turned out!
Wow, those may be the prettiest cookies I’ve ever seen! Well done!
Thank you, Cadry! My first batch was…not so pretty :-)! But I persevered!
These cookies look absolutely amazing! I will be making these soon!
YUM!!! These look and sounds SO good! I loved your description of the restaurant too. My folks had the most amazing middle eastern place near their old house, in the northern Atlanta suburbs, tucked into a strip mall that sounds almost identical to Nunu’s. Maybe they’re long-lost cousins!
Love the sound and look of these! I’m a huge Middle-Eastern food fan but somehow haven’t really ventured into dessert territory. Pinning this recipe 🙂
These look gorgeous and remind me of fig rolls. Do you have those in the States? Sweet chewy fruit inside pastry is a winner in my book.
Oh my! I love that you used Tahini in the dough……..brilliant! I’m on a tahini phase, just bought a 2 lbs bag of sesames from Amazon so I hope it lasts……..these remind me of the fig cookies you made for Kristy’s cookie event two years ago. Two years ago, that’s sad. Where is life going to so quickly.
Lovely job. Send some up to your Mom and make her smile 😉 XX
You had me at ginger! These look and sound delightful. Oh, and it makes me sad to hear about pastures being turned into parking lots and strip mall hell. 🙁
Oh my these do look like little mini pie pop-tarts! They look lovely and delicious with these flavors!
These are the cutest little pies/cookies I’ve seen. Such a healthy recipe! These pics are stuck in my mind now. 🙂
Gorgeous and they sound incredible. Definitely trying these, gluten free husband or no! 😉
I love when restaurants are vegan welcoming, especially hidden gems like that! These cookies sound right up my alley. I love tahini and the thought of adding it to a little pop-tart cookie with dates sounds scrumptious:) Thank you for sharing!
those are the cutest hand pie cookies! . gorgeous shots and that board color is mesmerizing!
Mini pop-tarts?! Yes, please, I don’t care what they are called, they look delicious! They are absolutely adorable and such a simple recipe, I love it and definitely plan to make these! Beautiful Annie!
Oh and I love the filling with the orange and ginger, omg, sounds so good!!
Oh, question…you and I both use Recipe card…when you print out your recipe, does the photo show up on the printed paper? I can see my photo on my printout screen of my recipe, but it doesn’t show up on the printout and I can’t figure out why!
Ha! I haven’t printed anything out since I updated! So I just did and I see exactly what you mean. I can see the photo in the preview (and even that I can select NOT to include the photo), but no photo prints w/ the recipe. I can’t find anything in the RC settings about it, either. Maybe it’s a glitch in the plugin.
Definitely yummy all on its own!
Thanks, Brandi! I was an absolute Pop Tart fiend when I was in my late teens and have always loved crust and fruit together.
These are gorgeous, Annie!
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