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Behemoth

Manna from heaven

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This whole Manna thread is pretty amazing. I have heard of manna as a kid told to me as a bible story. I never saw or tasted it, however, a friend once told me that in Iraq they do eat manna in the form of a sweet they make. So, I was under the impression that today's manna is nothing more than a concoction named manna and not THE manna of the bible.

Reading through this thread I think we can divide manna into at least four categories:

1- The bible's manna, the one provided for the Israelis by God when they were lost in the dessert for 40 years.

2- A form of secretion/resin from a tree that is sweet and crystalizes (think Maple syrup)

3- A man-made concotion that has nothing to do with trees, bugs or the bible.

4- A hybrid Manna, made using the resin of the tree AND used with other additives to make some sort of candy or cake.

I do have several thoughts about each one of these and I will post them soon. In the meantime, does this sound accurate to you? Am I missing anything?

Elie


E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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

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The Italian and Iraqi products certainly seem to be related...but I am interested in knowing whether they are identical. The descriptions differ a little.

The Iraqi one is supposedly gathered off the trees after a rainfall, and are the secretions of aphids living on the trees (if I read that first article correctly), whereas the Italian kind is obtained directly from the tree, more like maple syrup. Interesting. Does eGullet want to sponsor a research fellowship? :wink:

Edited to add, I am talking about the actual raw substance, not the candy that is produced from it, obviously.


Edited by Behemoth (log)

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Hmm, it looks suspiciously like Esfahani Gaz or a nice Iranian nougat. :biggrin:

Good stuff and packaged in a flour to keep it from sticking together.

I have a box in my fridge I should open. If I do, I will post picture and box.

lalala


I have a relatively uninteresting life unless you like travel and food. Read more about it here.

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Hmm, it looks suspiciously like Esfahani Gaz or a nice Iranian nougat. :biggrin:

Good stuff and packaged in a flour to keep it from sticking together.

I have a box in my fridge I should open. If I do, I will post picture and box.

lalala

The concept is similar to gaz but it's a LOT chewier and the taste is very different (better!)

Here is a photo:

gallery_17531_173_51035.jpg

The paper says "Mosul sweets and pastries company." I assume my parents cut it from the box because they thought I wouldn't believe they'd gotten some. :rolleyes: (Yes, those are pistachios embedded in there...)

The texture is a bit like nougat I guess but the flavor is hard to describe. I would put it sort of in the same flavor category as cardamom or mastic?

I was happy to find that article bacause it is one of the few mentions I've seen in the western press. Maybe with Iraq in the news there will be more western interest in the product, though I assume quantities are limited by nature.

As for a recipe, do they say how to get hold of the resin?

This looks like all the minn al-sima I've seen, though I've usually seen it in the big box full of flour (or is it powdered sugar? it's been a while...) You traditionally are presented with the box and take a little piece out of it.

The taste is indescribable and amazing. Behemoth is sort of right, imagine cardamom and mastic had a child that was more than the sum of its parts. There's nothing like it.

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The issue here is the name gaz is way diffrent from Kurdish name Gazzo , please be aware these are two entierly diffrent things, The italian manna and the Gazzo are much mor erelated but I agree with @Behemoth on the difference. I've asked a friend that travels to kurdistan sson to bring me some.

just for teh taste if you can get some pollen collected by honeybees that usually is mixed a little bit with honey and east it you almost get the same tatse as gazzo, of course not the same thing.  

Hmm, it looks suspiciously like Esfahani Gaz or a nice Iranian nougat. biggrin.gif

Good stuff and packaged in a flour to keep it from sticking together.

I have a box in my fridge I should open. If I do, I will post picture and box.

lalala

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