Kaek (pretzel with sesame)

When we were kids, we loved to open the cabinet at our grandparents’ kitchen and gobble these crunchy, tasty, Syrian pretzels that my grandmother used to bake. Today my kids do the same when they visit my parents. My father is the one who keeps the kaek box full.



1 kg all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon salt
1 margarine (200 gr)
1 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon anise seeds
2 cups lukewarm water
1½ tablespoons dry yeast

Sesame Coating

1 beaten egg
200 gr sesame seeds


  1. In a food processor combine all the dough ingredients and process until the dough forms a ball (you can also knead the dough by hand if you do not have a food processor).
  2. Place the ball of dough into a lightly oiled bowl. Cover bowl with kitchen towel or plastic wrap. Place in a warm place for half an hour to rise.
  3. Cut the dough into small pieces and roll each piece into a snake in the size of about 15 cm. Make a circle from the snake to create a pretzel by pinching the two ends together. Dip each pretzel in a beaten egg following by sesame seeds and place in a greased baking tray 2 cm apart.
  4. Preheat oven to 170°C. Bake pretzels for about half an hour until golden. When all pretzels are baked, turn off the oven and put all pretzels inside on a baking tray.
  5. Cool pretzels and store in a sealed container.