We recently had an exciting virtual trip through Arab. It’s incredible the rich things that can be found around the world. So we decided to save a delicious dessert Kunafa, typical of Arabs, for this post. It is a kataifi pasta-based cake filled with fresh cheese, bathed in rich citrus syrup and crowned with pistachios or almonds.
Kataifi pasta, for those who don’t know, is a thin noodle used for both desserts and savoury dishes. They are normally found in supermarkets or shops selling Arabic products. The truth is, If you are a restless cook, you dont hesitate to investigate how it is done in-depth and get down to work.
So if you want to know the preparation of this pasta, do not hesitate to go through a tutorial on making homemade kataifi pasta. If not, you always have the option to buy it made.
This is considered the national dessert of Egypt and the most popular dessert during Ramadan. It is crunchy on the outside and delicious and creamy on the inside. For cheese lovers, it’s absolute glory.
It is also prepared in Greece, Turkey, Iran, Iraq, UAE etc. Each country, like each family, has its version, and the cheese in the filling is adapted a little, depending on the place. Some use mosarella, ricotta, feta, etc. I have used fresh goat cheese and a bit of ricotta, and the result is incredible.
Although If you don’t know how you could make it, you can do the impossible not to miss it. This meeting has become customary during these Christmas days. And it is this beautiful time.
Now yes, let’s go with the recipe.
- 250g kataifi pasta
- 250 gr of fresh goat cheese*
- 50 grams of ricotta
- 200 gr of ghee or melted butter
- Two tablespoons of honey
- 1 handful of pistachios to decorate
- *Fresh cheese cream, feta, ricotta, mozzarella, etc. are used
- 1 cup of water
- 1 cup of sugar
- One tablespoon lemon juice
- One piece of cinnamon or a piece of cinnamon stick
- One pinch of cardamom.
- Untangle the kunafa noodles and chop them with a knife into pieces of approximately 2 cm.
- Place them in a bowl and add the ghee or melted butter. Stir very well so that the butter permeates all the kataifi pasta. Booking.
- Mix the fresh goat cheese with the ricotta and the two tablespoons of honey. Depending on the cheese you have chosen, you must mix or stir it to make it creamier or crumble it to be able to use it as a filling.
- In a mould or container suitable for the oven, add 3/4 parts of the dough to make the base of the cake and reserve the remaining part for the end. With the help of a cup with a flat base, press the kataifi dough so that it looks like a kind of bowl of dough to add the filling later.
- Add the cheese, spread it all over the base and finally, place the leftover dough to cover the cake.
- Preheat the oven to 200ºC for 10 minutes. Place the cake to bake for approximately 45 minutes. Watch that it browns but not that it is not excessive. Depending on the oven, it can take more or less time.
- While the cake is baking, prepare the syrup. Place the water, sugar and other ingredients over medium heat. When it comes to a boil, reduce the heat to a minimum of 10 minutes. Just before reaching 10 minutes, add the lemon juice and turn it off.
- Once the cake is ready and still hot, add the syrup over the whole cake so that it absorbs it.