The first time I ate mamoul was when my sister brought them home from the middle eastern store for me to try. I took one bite and almost swooned. They tasted of gulkand!
Gulkand is an Ayurvedic preparation of rose petals and sugar, extremely delicious (think rose petal jam) and used as a home remedy for several problems. It is also used as a filling in sweet paan, a betel leaf digestive/delicacy offered to guests and sold at every corner cigarette shop in India.
Those mamouls were not stuffed with gulkand, though. They were stuffed with dates flavored with rose water. I'm not a big fan of dates, currants, raisins and other such gooey fruits, and a stick of quince paste seemed like a perfect fit for mamoul. I added walnuts and rose water, and voila! The same gulkand taste. I also found the perfect recipe at a favorite food blog, and the wooden mold at the International store. This was a recipe begging to be made.