Maltese bone biscuits

The Maltese “bone” biscuits are traditional for the feast of all souls, and are made and sold locally in the month of the dead – November. Why not have a go at making Pippa Mattei's recipe yourself?

Maltese bone biscuits


  • 356g plain flour
  • 175 sugar
  • 175 margarine or butter
  • Grated rind of one lemon
  • 2 egg yolks (keep one white for the almond filling)

For the filling

  • 175g blanched almonds ground in a processor
  • 80g sugar
  • A little fresh lemon juice
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon orange blossom water (ilma zahar)


Mix flour and sugar in a bowl, add the margarine or butter cut up into pieces and mix altogether until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Add the grated rind and the egg yolks. Mix well until it becomes a fairly firm dough. Only add a little water if necessary. Set aside.

To make the filling, mix the ground almonds with the sugar, lemon juice, egg white and blossom water. Mix very well by hand or in a processor. Set aside.

To make the bones

Pre-heat oven to 180°C.

On a floured surface roll out the dough very thickly.

With a sharp knife cut out shapes of half a bone, put some almond filling on top of these shapes.

Cut similar bone shapes and put on top on shapes with almond filling.

Press two halves of the bones together till all filling is concealed and bone is the right shape.

Carefully place on a lightly greased oven tray and bake in a pre-heated oven for about 30 minutes until golden brown.

Remove from oven and allow to cool before placing on wire racks to get completely cold before icing.



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