These filled cookies called Klaicha have a center of chopped dates and a hint of butter and are fairly low in sugar and surprisingly tasty. After just 24 hours since they came out of the oven and cooled off, I think I am addicted. They are shaped a bit like tiny pyramids, you use a dinner fork to press on them on opposite sides to flatten them while creating ridges reminiscent of peanut butter cookies. The dough is made from buckwheat flour, brown rice flour, almond flour and tapioca flour with brown sugar and butter. Spiced a bit with cinnamon, cardamon and anise seeds which give it a subtle middle eastern flavor profile when combined with the date filling. They are Iranian in origin, and I have no idea how to pronounce the traditional name, so I am just calling them date pyramid cookies, no offence Iran! I like that there isn’t a ton of date in each cookie; my sister Margie used to make these tasty date bars but honestly, I always thought they had just way too much date; was an overwhelming flavor in my humble opinion. Date pyramid cookies; just the right amount and a pleasing hint of spice. Date cookie perfection.
I enjoy their slightly crunchy exterior and soft date center. I like that they are fairly low in sugar (the date filling sweetens them up a lot) and that Klaicha are made with whole grain flours for most part. Forming them is a bit of a task. Half way through I returned them to the fridge to harden the dough and stop it from being a sticky mess on my hands. That said, it didn’t take long to do all 25 of them. Definitely a keeper recipe for the flavor, the texture and the relatively low sugar.
KLAICHA DATE PYRAMID COOKIES
1 cup brown rice flour
1 cup almond flour (not meal)
½ cup buckwheat flour
½ cup tapioca flour
¼ rounded tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground cardamon
½-1 tsp. anise seeds
1 ½ tsp. xanthan gum
Pinch sea salt
9 Tbsp. room temp (firm) butter cut into 12-15 small pieces
½ cup brown sugar
5-7 Tbsp filtered water
Filling: 1 cup plus 1 Tbsp. chopped dates, 1 ½ Tbsp butter
Directions: Put flours, spices, salt and gum in stand mixer bowl. Cut in butter with either the stand mixer paddle or a handheld butter cutter until butter is in tiny pebbles. Add sugar, blend. Add water as mixer turns slowly; a steady stream. Use all of it or less; you want it to come together into a slightly crumbly dough. Chill 30-60 minutes. Mix dates and water in sauce pan; cook covered on low for 5-7 minutes until softened and butter blends in; stir frequently. Let cool.
Form cookies: a chunk the size of a large walnut formed into a ball, squash it down with your thumb or index finger; place 1 tsp date mix in that depression and push dough up to form it back into a ball. If you use too much date filling it will be very difficult to get the dough to wrap completely around the filling. Once done with that step, use a dinner fork to press on opposite sides of the ball to leave ridges on those two sides. Place on lightly sprayed baking sheet. I kinda gently scrunch them down so they have a flat bottom. Bake at 325 degrees for 30-32 minutes until light brown. The bottom of the cookies should be browned but not dark. Let them cool on the sheet. They get a bit crunchy by the time the cookies are fully cooled. I store mine in the cookie jar and a few in the freezer for when these run out…gf cookies rarely keep well so I always freeze some. Great with a cup of tea or coffee. I dare you to eat just one.