Note: This recipe courtesy of Suzanne Sasson


For the Dough

  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour

  • ½ cup semolina flour

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

  • ¾ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ cup warm (110 degrees) water, plus more as needed

  • ¼ cup sesame seeds

For the Filling

  • 1 pound freshly grated muenster cheese

  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

  • Pinch of salt (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare the dough: In the bowl of a food processor, combine all-purpose flour, semolina, butter, and salt; process until mixture resembles coarse meal, 8 to 10 seconds. While pulsing, add warm water in a slow, steady stream through feed tube, adding more, if necessary; process until dough just comes together. Dough should be soft and moist, not sticky. Cover bowl; set aside.

  2. Prepare the Filling: In a large bowl, gently stir to combine cheese, egg, and salt, if using; set aside.

  3. On a work surface, divide dough into thirds; keep two-thirds dough covered in the bowl. With remaining one-third dough, form walnut-sized balls, 1 to 1 1/2-inches in diameter. Place sesame seeds in a small bowl; dip each ball into sesame seeds to cover halfway. Using a tortilla press or the palm of your hand, flatten each ball, sesame-side down, into a 2 1/2-inch circle. Place 1 scant teaspoon of filling into center of circle; fold dough over filling to enclose, forming a half-moon shape. Press edges together to seal, and crimp edges decoratively using the back of a fork. Transfer to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet; cover with a damp towel to prevent drying out. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Sambusak can be frozen at this point for up to 3 months.

  4. Bake until edges are lightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes; do not allow sambusak to brown as filling will dry out. Serve warm.

Cook's Notes

Uncooked sambusak can be frozen for up to 3 months.

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