Introduction: Irresistible Savory Sesame Cookies
Abadi Cookies are savory sesame cookies that are extremely popular in Israel, addictive and crunchy. The Abadi family came to Jerusalem from Syria in 1928 and opened a bakery there, where they soon became famous for these cookies. This recipe achieves the flavor of the store-bought cookies and is really easy and fun to make. The secret ingredient here is the beer that is used instead of baking powder. It's a very modular recipe so you can add to it any spice that you'd like (For instance some smoked paprika and parmesan cheese, or curry powder, or some fennel seeds and coarse sea salt on top. Anything, really), though I suggest you try the classic version first. For a healthier version you can substitute the flour with whole wheat or spelt flour.
And guess what? They're vegan!
Abadi cookies are delicious with any dip but also fabulous on their own with a cup of tea on the side.
Prepare to get hooked!
Yields: About 25 cookies
3.5 cups (500 grams) flour
1/2 heaping tablespoon (10 grams) salt
1 cup (140 grams) sesame seeds
1 cup (240ml/8oz) beer (any brand you have will do, the temperature doesn't matter either)
3/4 cup (180ml/6oz) oil (canola oil or olive oil)
1/4 cup (60ml/2oz) water
2 Oven trays lined with parchment paper
Wooden spoon or spatula (feel free to use your hands though!)
Measuring cups and a measuring spoon
Flour sifter (optional)
Preheat oven to 180 Celsius (356 Fahrenheit) and line the oven trays with parchment paper.
Mix together the flour (if you're into it and have a sifter, sift it first), salt and sesame seeds.
Add the beer, oil and water. Mix together and knead until the ingredients are combined and a dough forms. If it's sticky, add a bit of flour. If you're using whole wheat flour you might need a bit more water (Add a tablespoon at a time). The dough should feel a little oily and flexible to the touch, if you press your finger into it, it should leave a mark.
Note: If your oven has a turbo program, you can bake both trays at the same time. If not, do the following steps with about 2/3 of the dough (until the tray is full) and while the first batch is in the oven, shape the rest of the dough (and bake it when the first tray is done).
Make small dough balls, about the size of a golf ball.
Push your finger inside each dough ball and twist a bit to create a hole. The shape should look like a miniature bagel. It might not look perfect, but part of the charm is that you can tell the cookies are handmade.
Another option is to shape the dough into sticks. You can also make small ropes from the dough and shape them into rings.
Arrange the cookies on the oven tray, the space between each cookie can be pretty narrow since they don't rise a lot.
Bake for about 30 minutes, until the cookies are tan and golden (since every oven is a bit different, I recommend you check them after 20 minutes).
optional: If you'd like your cookies to be extra crispy, leave them in the oven to dry while it turns off and cools. If you baked several batches you can put in the previous ones too.
Like any cookie, store the Abadi cookies in a jar or a sealed container. They keep for up to two weeks, but chances are there wouldn't be any left way sooner than that 😉.
Participated in the
Cookies Speed Challenge