a simple to prepare traditional lebanese christmas cookie (yes, it's january and many of us are cleaning up our diets to begin the new year right, so just remember this post for next christmas! and for our lebanese Easter cookies—mamools—i promise to post them before Easter!) the almond crescent moon cookies, nus qamar in arabic, are so light and melt in your mouth with a little crunch, it's hard to stop eating them.
it's basically a butter, sugar, flour mixture with ground almonds and flavored with vanilla and almond extract—of course they're yummy! the dough easily rolls into a coil whose ends i pinch and curve into a crescent moon shape. baking time is pretty quick until they're slightly golden. here's the unbaked cookies on a baking tray. the finished ones were eaten or shipped out for christmas before i had a chance to photograph them! but i have some extra dough that i froze, so when i bake them up, i'll be sure to add the photo. i have to admit, my beloved mother alice's looked far more beautiful than mine! she would make them tiny, while mine turned out to be giant moons! God bless her hands and rest her soul! she would bake dozens and dozens and give them all away, in the true spirit of lebanese generosity.
find the full recipe on p. 197 of alice's kitchen: traditional lebanese cooking.