Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Meghli (Lebanese dessert)

Meghli (cinnamon caraway rice pudding)
Well.. the now infamous recipe! I started writting this post in preparation for my 1st Lebanon trip :) over Xmass,, but when I actually got to make it, I poured the whole boiling thing over my thumb, and got a "fun" burn (be wiser than I was when holding the glasses to fill xD). The recipe is from my future aunt-in-law :)

So, Meghli is a traditional Lebanese dessert that is prepared to celebrate when a baby is born (including baby Jesus) and so typical of Christmas!

It is basicaly a sort of cinnamon-caraway spiced rice powder pudding, topped with nuts & coconut shavings.
When you first try it, it is a bit confusing flavorwise (at least for a European), as per its spices' flavour.

This is not an overwhelmingly sweet dessert (so no sugar syrup or butter oozing out!) that is fairly easy to prepare, and always gets thumbs up from d man of the house :) (as you know my toughest critic)

- 1 cup Rice powder
- 1 1/2 cup Sugar (white; caster)
- 1 Tbsp Caraway powder
- 1 1/2 Tbsp Cinnamon powder
- 7 cup Water (6 in mix + 1 at boiling)

Additional, toppings: Coconut shavings (small), Almonds (non-salted), Walnuts, Pistachio

Please note that you will need a large pot for this one (and it will yield about 12 glasses/servings of dessert). You can half the recipe for about 6 servings :)

Firstly combine all dry ingredients with 6 cups of water in a large pot. (Keep the remaining 1 cup on the side).

Place the pot over medium-high heat, and keep stirring with a whisk* until the mix starts boiling. At this point you should be seeing that it is thickening-up.

Once it comes to a boil, add the 1 cup of water left to the mix and combine well. Keep on the fire, stirring constantly for about 20-30 min (until the mixture thickens enough, that it dollops (not pours) off a spoon).

Take off the fire, and set on the side to allow to cool for a couple of minutes only. Then pour into your glass (or heatproof) tins/glasses to individual serving portions.

Let cool down for a good 20 min.
Then cover with cling-wrap & refridgerate for at least 2 hours. It serves cold.

When you want to serve this, sprinkle with coconut shavings, and roasted non-salted nuts: walnuts, slivered almonds/pistachios, (and yellow dried raisins if you like.. we are not fans of these..).

Place the toppings decoratively and you will have a Lebanese style dessert! Bon apetit :)

*Regarding the whisk, I use a rubber-coated whisk, so as not to scratch my pan.

Mental note: Do not hold the glasses while you pour.. you might burn yourself

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