I can’t express how much joy this gives me. I finally found the recipe for my mom’s Ka’ak cookie recipe. Ka’ak is a savory middle eastern sesame cookie that pairs perfecty with a cup of coffee or tea. I used to watch my mother make these adorable round bagel-like cookies when I was a little girl.

I have her recipe book, but it is a mishmash of Hebrew and English with awful measurements. The tattered recipe book is literally falling apart, but I can’t help looking at it every so often to find a little gem of a recipe from my childhood. I searched through every page of that thing and couldn’t find the recipe for Ka’ak. So, I scoured the internet in the hopes that I would find the right one. There were a lot of trials and failures over the years.

I knew the overall recipe – flour, salt, margarine, baking powder, a bit of sugar and of course sesame – but I couldn’t get the measurements right. Trust me, there are a lot of recipes for Ka’ak on the internet. Every recipe I found had way too much sugar or just didn’t jive with my memories. Some had dates, some had pistachios (which I would love to try), but none were my mom’s. I had just about given up…

But then both my sisters-in-laws reached out to me within a couple of weeks of each other asking me if I had the recipe. They ignited the fire in my belly, and I was once again determined to find the recipe for the sesame cookie.

So, last night at 9 pm, I started searching yet again. At 9:15 pm, I found gold. While not perfect, it was close – and I started to bake. The dough was malleable, I just needed to add a bit more water. Oh my God, it was actually coming together. At 10 pm, I realized I was missing a critical ingredient – sesame! So, I got in my car, drove the three minutes to the corner market and got that damn sesame! Thirty minutes later, the cookies were done.

This morning, I had a sesame cookie with coffee. Perfection! I love you Ema, and I am raising my cup and my sesame cookie to you!


My Ema’s/Mom’s Cookbook