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Atayif, Ataiif or Katayif


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12 replies to this topic

#1 wgallois

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Posted 30 October 2003 - 12:12 PM

Four days into Ramadan and I find myself obsessed with Katayef, a deep-fried, nut-stuffed, syrup-y pastry that is often served as a pudding during this month. There are many different recipes available on books and on the net, and many variations from different parts of the Arab world, but let me offer rough instructions which come from a Jordanian friend:

1. Mix crushed equal amounts of crushed walnuts and dried coconut with half a teaspoon of cinammon and as much sugar as is to your taste.

2. Seal this mix inside fresh (must be bought or made that day) mini-pancakes, making sure that you seal the edges very conscientiously.

3. Drop the stuffed pastries into hot oil and cook until they are a deep brown.

4. Remove from oil and, before shaking off excess oil, drop into a pan of syrup (2 cups sugar to 1.5 cups water, plus 1 teaspoon rosewater, one teaspoon orange blossom water and a few drops of lemon juice).

5. Shake off excess syrup over pan and eat warm.

Speaking to friends from across the Arab world it seems that there are many, many different versions of katayef, some of which are savoury. Cream seems to be a popular filling, though many different kinds of nuts are used. A Palestinian friend, who is a real katayef-head, has given me the name of his favourite bakery where they will make you a giant katayef 'pizza' on request (near Buhaira lagoon in Sharjah fyi). Such treats do not sit well with my attempts at dieting...

More katayef info and enthusiasm much appreciated.

#2 FoodMan

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Posted 31 October 2003 - 10:11 AM

the secret to great Katayif is the pancake, and my aunt (mom's sister) makes the best ones. Next time I call my mom I need to ask her for the recipe.
as for the filling it's either cream (aishta) or nuts (crushed walnuts with sugar and oranbge blossom water). I personally prefer the cream ones, and at my houshold we more than often had them "raw" drizzled with fragrant syrup as a dessert, or pan fried in some vegetable shortening and also drizzled with syrup for breakfast.

Elie

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#3 wgallois

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Posted 31 October 2003 - 11:11 AM

Can't wait to see your aunt's pancake recipe Elie, and thanks for your thoughts about katayif.

#4 FoodMan

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Posted 03 November 2003 - 03:38 PM

I called my mom this weekend and she gave me the rough recipe. I will test it and post it once/if it works out.

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com


#5 Behemoth

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Posted 21 November 2004 - 04:19 PM

Those gummy pistachio things are called "Herissa Bil Fustuk" or Pistachio Herissa.

Kataiif or Ataiif as well as Znood El Sit are wonderful things. Here are some pics I took of Kataiif I made a while back. The holes in the "pancakes" were a little too big which means I need to make the batter a little firmer next time. Boy am I craving those now.

Posted Image



Um, you do realize you now have to provide a recipe, right? :smile: Do you make your own cream? There was some deal about having to get rid of the leftover milk because it is poisonous so I've always hesitated to do it. Is this something you've heard of?

We lived across the street from a Rifaat Hallab branch when I was a kid. I guess the only thing that kept me from becoming obese is the fact that Lebanese fruit is so good it manages to compete with the sweets...

I was just informed by my folks that someone sent us a box of manna. I don't think people in the US realize it actually exists -- it is a sweet made (in Jordan and Iraq mainly, I think) from some sort of resin that gets blown off plants onto rocks in the desert or something. I won't get it until christmas, but I will try to post pictures then.

Edited by Behemoth, 21 November 2004 - 04:20 PM.


#6 FoodMan

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Posted 22 November 2004 - 09:26 AM

The discussion about Ataiif started in the Middle Eastern pastries topic. However these wonderful pancakes stuffed with nuts or cream deserve their own thread with recipes and pics.

Hmm…can you please elaborate on this:

“There was some deal about having to get rid of the leftover milk because it is poisonous so I've always hesitated to do it. Is this something you've heard of?”

Yes I do make my own cream. Unfortunately, it is not Ashta, the fantastic thick cream they use in the middle east and is near impossible to make at home. It is rather a cooked cream, thickened with starch and flavored with sugar, rose water and orange blossom water.
I will be more than happy to post the recipe as soon as I get back home. Hopefully tonight.

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com


#7 Behemoth

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Posted 22 November 2004 - 08:26 PM

Hmm…can you please elaborate on this:

“There was some deal about having to get rid of the leftover milk because it is poisonous so I've always hesitated to do it. Is this something you've heard of?”


These things definitely deserve their own thread.

I think the danger comes from the fact that you were supposed to use raw milk. Since I have no idea where I could buy raw milk (well, I could probably find a source, but I'm lazy/time challenged...and risk averse.) I also found a recipe that uses a mixture of whole milk and cream. Haven't tried it yet. When I was in England, clotted cream tasted very similar to me -- any idea if they are similar? I also figured I could try it with mascarpone or something. It would be okay in kataif since you don't need that much, but it seems like with znoud-el-sit they would end up being major stomach bombs.

#8 Swisskaese

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Posted 27 November 2004 - 05:51 AM

I know that some people in the states also fill them with a mixture of ricotta that has been smoothed in a food processor and sugar.

Can you get Akkawi cheese in the States?

#9 FoodMan

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Posted 27 November 2004 - 10:06 PM

I have not forgotten my promise to post the recipe. I just had no time to type it up yet.

Swisskaese- I have seen Akawi cheese at middle eastern stores. It is usually sold frozen. Just ask for Kanafi cheese.

Elie

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Houston, TX

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contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com


#10 FoodMan

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Posted 12 December 2004 - 09:41 PM

Finally, I managed to sit my butt down and type this up. I tested this recipe this weekend so it should work just fine. Hope someone else tries it and reports as well.
For a syrup recipe you can find the one I use here.


Atayif

For Pancakes:
½ cup sugar
¼ cup water
1 tsp lemon juice
¼ tsp rosewater
3 cups AP flour
1 tsp instant yeast
2.25 cups water
½ tsp lemon salt
½ tsp baking soda

Cream Filling:
4 Tbsp corn starch
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp rosewater
½ tsp orange blossom water

Make the pancakes-
In a sauce pot combine the sugar, water, and lemon juice. Over medium heat, bring to a boil and let simmer for five minutes. Remove from the heat and add the rosewater. Let cool. Once cooled it should be pretty thick, thicker than molasses.
In a bowl mix the flour and yeast. Add the water and mix until you get a thick batter. Cover the bowl with a plastic wrap and let the batter ferment at room temperature for and hour or until bubbly.
Add the thick syrup, lemon salt and baking soda to the batter. Mix thoroughly, cover and let sit for another thirty minutes. The batter is now ready to use, it should be thicker than a pancake batter but still loose enough to pour from a ladle. If it is too thick mix in a little water.
To cook the pancakes, heat a nonstick pan or griddle over medium heat, make sure it is not too hot. Mix the batter and cook by ladling no more than 3 tablespoons at a time on the hot pan. Cook only on one side, until the bottom is lightly browned, and the top is set but not dry. The pancake is cooked if many holes start forming on the top and the batter is no longer shiny. You do not want the top to be dry or the pancakes will not seal when you stuff them. Basically the top should remain sticky. I know this sounds confusing but after cooking a couple of those you’ll know what I’m talking about.
Put the pancakes in a dish and cover with a towel. If you are not using right away, cover the pancakes with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

Make the filling-
Whisk the first three ingredients together until smooth. Put in a pot and heat over medium heat, whisking often until the mixture boils and is thick. Stir in the rosewater and the orange blossom water. Let cool to room temperature then cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
You can sue this filling for any middle eastern dessert that requires cream filling (kashta).

Assembling and frying (or not)-
To stuff the pancakes, put about a teaspoon of the filling in the center and seal by pressing the edges of the pancake together. You should end up with a perfect half moon. If the edges are a little dry, wet them with a little water and they should seal fine.
The finished atayif can be served as is drizzled with syrup or pan fried. To pan fry them, just heat up 1 Tbps of butter per two Atayif and pan fry until both sides are golden and slightly crispy. Serve with syrup.

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com


#11 Behemoth

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 08:51 PM

Elie, thanks so much for taking the time to type that up. I am at the end of my semester & travelling for 2 weeks over the holidays, but once I come back I will definitely give it a go, and post results. Happily, we will have a house guest then so I won't eat it all myself.

#12 Baklava Jenny

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Posted 21 December 2004 - 04:16 PM

I know that some people in the states also fill them with a mixture of ricotta that has been smoothed in a food processor and sugar.

Can you get Akkawi cheese in the States?

View Post


Yes, this is what we would do...use ricotta blended with sugar to sweeten it up and served with a simple syrup flavored with orange water.

It's delicious.

Thank you for the childhood memory, I will have to make these again.

#13 chefzadi

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Posted 13 March 2005 - 12:39 PM

Pancakes
1/2 teaspoon dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/4 cups lukewarm water
1 1/2 cups AP flour

Sugar Syrup
2 cups sugar
1 cup water
a drop of rose water
a gentle squeeze of lemon juice

Fillings
Walnuts
sugar
rose water

Cheese fillings
I can''t recall the name of the cheese

I suppose depending on what you're in the mood for ricotta or mozzarella could work.


You can bake these as well.
I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

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