I went on a quest for a sugee/semolina cookie recipe.
You know, the ones we get from the roti man with his quirky honk every evening, years ago (ok.... decades ago) when he did his rounds. And when we (the little kids and teenagers) would rush out to meet him halfway in someone else's driveway. Coins tingling or dollar notes flapping, eyes searching, voices squealing, fingers pointing at this and that. It was a time when queuing didn't exist (yes..we were wild).
And I would always reach for the sugee cookie. The big round sugee cookie that melted in your mouth as soon as you put it in. And then wished that you had bought 2 of them right after the roti man had throttled off, the only vestige of his existence being the smell of the exhaust fumes from his motorcycle. Yes, that semolina cookie but which were called the sugee cookie.
So imagine my surprise when I discovered that the sugee cookie that the roti man was selling, the one that I had been gobbling down every evening for a few years of my life until more pressing matters pushed that cookie, crumbs and all, into an amnesiac nook of my brain, only to surface again in 2009, was not a sugee cookie at all. In the sense that it contained no sugee/semolina.
What a dissapointing surprise. It was ghee that I had been gobbling down and salivating over. Just pure ghee and flour and sugar. So why did they call it a sugee cookie? Why why and why?
Not that I have anything against ghee, except for the cholesterol in it, but I couldn't help but feel somewhat betrayed. If you know what I mean. It's like having chomped down on a butter cake and it was actually not butter but magarine. Or a steak that was not meat but tofu in disguise. Or having been told that it was a chocolate cake when it was carob that they used. Or when you reached home thinking of the kuih dadar on the table but it was not there.
So the roti man's sugee cookie is no longer my friend. No matter how good it was I want sugee in my sugee cookie like I want butter in my butter cookie or chocolate in my chocolate cookie.
So in my quest for a true semolina/sugee cookie I found a recipe at Recipezaar. I have made these twice since. Once using white sugar and today I had followed the original recipe and used brown sugar. Both times I found them a little too sweet but otherwise very crunchy, addictive and good looking. I would reduce the sugar a little next time.
The brown sugar resulted in a darker, more golden and flatter cookie while the one with white sugar was fair and lovely :). It's your choice. I prefer the one with white sugar.
The recipe.....the original...
4 oz butter
75 gm soft brown sugar
100 gm plain flour
75 gm semolina
25 gm ground almonds
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in flour and mix well. Add the semolina and ground almonds and mix to a firm and smooth dough. Pinch balls of dough, place on a lined or greased baking tray and then flatten each ball with a fork.
Swipe with some egg white and place a slice of almond on it or a whole almond if you're feeling perky. Bake for about 10 mins in 180 C oven until golden brown. Keep in an airtight container.
These are the ones I made with white sugar a few months back. Aren't they pretty as well?