Little Easter Cookies (Paskalina)

March/April 1994

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These cookies are often served with coffee or sweet wine for dunking. Mahlepi is a spice ground from the inner seeds of cherrystones; it tastes like bitter almonds. Arab people call it mahlab. You can find it in Greek or Middle Eastern markets.

Little Easter Cookies (Paskalina)

Makes: 32 cookies

Active Time:

Total Time:


  • 2 1/4 cups sifted cake flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground mahlepi, (optional)


  1. Place oven rack in upper third of oven; preheat to 350°F. Lightly oil 2 baking sheets or coat with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Stir flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Make a well in the center and place oil, butter, eggs, lemon zest and mahlepi, if using, in the well. Mix with a fork, incorporating flour from the sides. Then knead gently with your hands just until you have a smooth ball of dough; the dough will be quite soft.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and pat into an 8-inch flattened round. Cut the round into 8 wedges, then cut each wedge into 4 pieces. Roll each piece into a rope about 6 inches long. Form each rope into a circle by overlapping the ends, or into a loop by twisting the ends together. Place 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets.
  4. Bake, one sheet at a time, for 15 to 18 minutes, or until light golden. Remove to a rack to cool.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.


Per cookie: 66 calories; 2 g fat (1 g sat, 1 g mono); 15 mg cholesterol; 11 g carbohydrates; 1 g protein; 0 g fiber; 35 mg sodium; 15 mg potassium.

Carbohydrate Servings: 1/2

Exchanges: 1 other carbohydrate

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Recipe Categories

Middle Eastern
Health & Diet Considerations
Diabetes appropriate
Low carbohydrate
Ease of Preparation
Total Time
1 hour or less
8 or more
Preparation/ Technique
March/April 1994
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