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Stuffed Monkey

This delicious Sephardic cake is popular among English Jews, though the meaning of the name is unknown. One theory is that monkey is a conuption of machshee, Arabic for "stuffed" or "filled."

ingredients

serves 10
1 egg white, beaten with 2 teaspoons water
1 cup slivered almonds

dough

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp margarine
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 drops almond extract

filling

1/2 cup chopped candied peel
1/2 cup chopped nuts (almonds, pecans, cashews, or walnuts)
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
2 tablespoons sugar
1 egg yolk
3 tablespoons margarine, melted

method

1. Make the dough. Sift the flour, salt, and cinnamon into a bowl and rub in the margarine until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

2. Stir in the beaten egg to bind, and add the almond extract. If the dough is too stiff to form into a ball, add a tablespoon or 2 of water.

3. Knead dough until smooth, then divide in half. Wrap each half in plastic and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes.

4. Preheat oven to 375°F.

5. Lightly grease a 9 x 14-inch jellyroll pan.

6. To make the filling, combine ingredients in a bowl and mix well.

7. Roll out 1 piece of dough on a floured board to fit the jellyroll pan.

8. Spread filling over the dough, then roll out the other piece of dough and lay it over the filling.

9. Pinch edges together so the filling does not leak out. Brush top of dough with the egg white mixture and generously sprinkle with the almonds.

10. Bake for 30 minutes, or until golden-brown. Cut into bars to serve.

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