Egypt: Kahk bi Loz

Almond Bracelets are a favorite at engagement and wedding parties in the Middle East, as well as during the traditional ritual bath of the bride. This custom is still common in rural areas, where the female relatives assess the bride’s potential to be a good wife and bear children easily. The bride-to-be listens to this commentary (hopefully positive) while she bathes in scented water and while trays laden with sweets are passed around for everyone to enjoy.

Kahk bi Loz (Almond Bracelets)

5 cups almonds, ground
2-1/2 cups confectioners sugar
1 egg white, stiffly beaten
Orange blossom water

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Mix almonds and sugar together. Add the egg white, stiffly beaten, to the amond/sugar mix. Add just enough orange blossom water to make a firm, dryish paste.

Knead the paste well and roll into thin sausages approximately 5" long. Bring the ends together forming bracelets the size of a small napkin ring. Decorate with a few blanched almonds if desired.

Arrange the bracelets on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes. DO NOT allow the bracelets to color or brown or the taste will change.

Remove carefully from the cookie sheets once they have cooled.

Source: The New Book of Middle Eastern Cooking by Claudia Roden, Knopf, NY NY 20001

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