Photograph by Grant Cornett Food Styling by Maggie Ruggiero Prop Styling by Theo Vamvounakis

Dusted Walnut Purses

Desserts from Issue 5 – Spring / Summer 2014 – Caravan

The date palm, which traces its roots back to the Persian Gulf, is known as the tree of life—understandable since its fruit, buds, sap, fibers and nuts are believed to have 800 uses. We had only one in mind for our fleshy Medjools: a shake reminiscent of the frothy delights doled out by Palm Springs institutions like Hadley’s and Shields.

makes 9 small sweets

  • 1 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 3 Tbsp honey
  • ¼ tsp orange zest or ½ tsp orange flower water
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 sheets defrosted phyllo, trimmed in a stack to 13-inch squares
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • confectioners sugar for dusting

  • 1

    Preheat oven to 425°F. Stir together walnuts, honey, zest or orange flower water, and cinnamon, with a pinch of salt. Let stand 15 minutes.

  • 2

    Meanwhile, stack squares of phyllo brushed with melted butter between each layer. Cut the stack lengthwise in thirds and crosswise again into thirds to form 9 squares. Divide walnut mixture between squares, spooning into the center of each one. Fold corners up into center and then fold new corners into center again pressing to seal. Bake sweets on a baking sheet, 6-8 minutes, until golden. Cool, then dust with confectioners sugar to serve.