Recipes for your (full) holiday cookie plate

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Here’s what goes on in our house right about this time every year: the holiday china and its accessory pieces appear, as do the pretty paper plates for giving some of the bounty away. A plate or two are filled with cookies and candies, and refilled so that the plates are full at all times.

We say this is so that we are ready to serve something special whenever someone drops in. We say how nice that is for company.


Then we proceed to eat it all, or at least most of it, ourselves. A cookie after lunch? Yes. A late evening cup of tea would be perfect with a sweet. Mid-morning? That’s a big yes (ok, after the oatmeal). Thank God for plank and its many painful variations.

I know we’re not alone with the cookie plate. My Uncle Fawaz and his wife Awatif keep a little stand near the kitchen table that is just for sweets, like a perpetual sweets buffet. Is it a Lebanese thing, the “sweets hospitality,” part of the DNA we couldn’t avoid even if we wanted to?

I like to think it is. Yes, it’s Lebanese. That explains it.

A Holiday Cookie Plate

 Orange Blossom Baklawa

Chocolate Dipped Candies

Walnut Mahmoul
Stay tuned…recipe is coming up!

Date Crisp Balls

Iced Chocolate Cut-Out Cookies

Gingerbread Boys
Stay tuned for a gingerbread with no ginger. I prefer…cinnamon only. Ever had cookies on Delta airlines? Biscoff. It’s like that.

Candied Orange Peel

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  1. Diane Nassir (My maternal grandmother was an Abowd) says:

    Oh yes, I believe it is a Lebanese thing and you are so right–it is so deeply embedded in the culture that it is now part of our DNA. My mother, my paternal grandmother, my paternal aunt, each had their own specialty, and yes, always on the prettiest plates and always full. The baking began right after Thanksgiving. Mahmoul, I have never made it on my own so I am waiting with great anticipation for your recipe, pictures, and memories. While baklawa was my mother’s specialty and was divine and available thru January, my grandmother’s was mahmoul–so I could only enjoy it every New Year’s Day at her home.
    Such joy!

    1. Maureen Abood says:

      Great memories Diane! Thank you!

  2. Susan says:

    Oh my… Wish I could drive by, but it is about 700 miles out of my way…

    1. Maureen Abood says:

      My light is on for you!