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The Delicious Imqaret

Maltese Sweets




For the pastry:

I tablespoon vegetable shortening or lard

I tablespoon unsalted butter or margarine

I cup flour, sifted

I tablespoon sugar

I teaspoon anisette liqueur

I to 2 teaspoons orange flower water

For the filling:

1 pound dates, pitted and chopped milk or water for soaking dates 1 teaspoon cloves zest of I lemon or orange 1 shot glass of anise liqueur 1 tablespoon orange flower water sufficient vegetable oil for deep frying


For the pastry: Cut in the shortening and butter into the flour with a pastry blender. Add sugar, anisette, and orange flower water. Form pastry into a hall. Wrap in tea cloth or plastic wrap and refrigerate for approximately one hour.

For the filling: Soak the dates in a small amount of milk or water for approximately 30 minutes. Add cloves, lemon zest, anise liqueur, and orange flower water. Mix well. Set aside.

On well-floured pastry board or other hard surface, roll out dough into a long, wide strip. Spread date mixture in the middle of the strip. Fold pastry over and seal carefully. Cut sealed strip into "diamond" shapes. Press edges of individual "diamonds" closed. Fry in heated deep oil until crisp and golden brown. Remove from oil and drain on absorbent paper. Serve hot.

3 to 4 servings.

This recipe features in "Taste of Malta by Claudia A. Caruana, a New York based journalist of Maltese origin.

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