A very popular dessert not only In Lebanon but throughout the Middle East,Literally the name means " Lebanese Nights" this Lebanese Cold Semolina Pudding (Layali Lubnan) is a pudding with a layer of soft sliceable semolina at the bottom and then a layer of fresh Ashta (Arabic clotted cream) on top. Some people just use a ready thick table cream , but I like Ashta, because it makes it very creamy and has a firmer, creamier mouth feel! so I mix Ashta with some thick table cream. But you can sure use only table thick cream for easier version. Sprinkle some nuts, usually Pistachios and drizzled with scented rose syrup!
A popular ingredient is often added to this beautiful cold sweet, called "Mastic" it is usually employed in most of Middle eastern desserts, which gives a unique flavor resin....grounded into powder and used in very little amount.
This dessert recipe can whipped up quickly a head of time, then chills in the fridge until serving time.
Layali Lubnan (Lebanese semolina pudding)
1 liter milk
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup fine -medium semolina
1 egg *( you can skip the egg ,but it adds more rich creamy texture )
1 teaspoon Rose water
1/4 teaspoon Mastic powder *(if it was not easy to get , skip it)
1/2 cup mixture of Ashta and Nestle thick table cream
Simple Scented Syrup :
¾ cup sugar
½ cup water
squeeze of lemon juice
½ teaspoon orange blossom water
½ teaspoon rose water
- to prepare the syrup, put the sugar in a small saucepan, pour the water onto the sugar. Add the lemon juice and turn the heat on medium. Do not stir, just let it come to a boil by itself. Once the bubbles rise to the surface, reduce heat to low and boil for 5 minutes, avoid stirring because that may cause the syrup to crystallize later. Swirling the saucepan around a few times is ok, though. After five minutes, remove syrup from the heat, add in the orange blossom and rose waters, and let cool aside.
- In a large pot whisk together the milk, semolina, sugar and egg with a whisk.
-Then transfer over low-medium heat and keep stirring, to bring this mixture to a boil. Stirring with a whisk prevents stick or burn. It will take around 20 minutes to thickens up , remove from the heat and add mastic powder and rose water,Stir.
- pour the mixture into serving cups, and smooth up the surface, allow to cool on the counter for 15 minutes or until it's no longer hot,spread Ashta mixture on top of each cup and smooth it up, cover with plastic rap and chill up to 4-5 hours.
-Before serving sprinkle with some ground pistachios and drizzle with Syrup.
Bon Appétit :)
** For Recipe in Arabic plz click here