Imqaret served with ice cream, Malta
Imqaret served with ice cream, Malta
Imqaret street vendor, Marsaxlokk
Imqaret street vendor, Marsaxlokk

Imqaret (Maltese pronunciation: [ɪm'ʔarɛt]) are traditional Maltese sweets made with pastry and a filling of dates. The word imqaret in Maltese, is the plural of maqrut (diamond-shaped) and it signifies the diamond shape of the sweets – even though in many cases they are sold in a rectangular shape.[1][2] They are very popular in Malta and they are sold in street markets, as well as in village feasts, in some cases served with ice-cream.[3]

During preparation the imqaret are deep fried and are usually infused with the flavours of aniseed and bay leaf. The imqaret are prepared individually by folding the pastry, in the centre of which a quantity of filling is placed. As the pastry is long, several imqaret pieces are then cut from each pastry following the deep frying process.[3][4][5]

Imqaret are of Arabic origin, introduced during the period of the Arab invasion of the island between 870 AD and the 11th century, while a similar sweet named makroudh or maqrud or makroud exists across the sea in Tunisia, which is also popular across Algeria and Morocco with the names makrout, maqrout, mqaret.[6][7]

See also


  1. ^ Malta & Gozo, Juliet Rix, Bradt Travel Guides, 2013, p. 192
  2. ^ Food and Drinks of Malta Archived 2014-05-02 at the Wayback Machine, Malta travel guide
  3. ^ a b IMQARET Dates Diamonds Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine,
  4. ^ Malta, Brian Richards, New Holland Publishers, 2008 p. 29
  5. ^ Street Food: Recreating the World's most authentic tastes, Tom Kime, Dorling Kindersley Ltd, 2007 p. 138
  6. ^ Sweet Delights from a Thousand and One Nights: The Story of Traditional Arab Sweets, Habeeb Salloum, Muna Salloum, I.B.Tauris, Λονδίνο 2013, σελ. 132, ISBN 9781780764641
  7. ^ Proceedings of the First Congress on Mediterranean Studies of Arbo-Berber Influence, Micheline Galley, David R. Marshall, Société nationale d'édition et de diffusion, 1973