Friday, 1 March 2013

Konafa كنافة Kataifi

It has been a busy few weeks with running the cooking classes but I definitely do enjoy the time cooking and talking over cups of Hibiscus tea (Red tea كركديه Karkadé).

This week we made sweets and it was the first time I had made Konafa in a long time.  It was a big hit and it was all about to go before someone kindly put some aside for me to take home for the boys.  Naturally they were in bed when I got home but they did get to taste it the following day and my oldest son (nearly 5 and very much looking forward to "turning another number") tells me he liked it very much and asked if he could eat it all please.

What better recipe to put up than one which is crunchy on top, soggy through the middle, with the texture of the nuts and drenched with sugar syrup.

Konafa كنافة Kataifi is one of the easy Egyptian sweets that is delicious and quick to prepare.  My mum made this fairly often usually with nuts but the combination of nuts varied depending on what we already had in the pantry.  Usually walnuts, almonds and pistachios are used but you could add hazelnuts or other nuts if you prefer them.  Make sure they are unsalted, but there is no need to roast them or peel the skins off.

It is traditionally served with tea and coffee (which really does help cut through the intensity of the sugar in the Konafa).

Konafa كنافة Kataifi

Konafa كنافة Kataifi
Konafa كنافة Kataifi

Konafa كنافة Kataifi
Konafa كنافة Kataifi
Konafa كنافة Kataifi
Konafa كنافة Kataifi

To make the syrup:
1 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ cups water
half a lemon juiced
A few drops of vanilla extract, rose water or orange blossom water.

Combine the sugar, water and lemon juice in a small saucepan, bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until it is thick enough to coat a spoon.  Leave to cool then add a few drops of vanilla essence or 1-2 teaspoons rose water or orange blossom water and stir.

Konafa كنافة Kataifi
Konafa كنافة Kataifi

375g / 1 packet shredded pastry or Konafa (Kataifi)
250g unsalted butter or ghee (clarified butter), melted
Konafa كنافة Kataifi
Konafa كنافة Kataifi
2 cups / 225g unsalted shelled pistachio, walnuts or almonds, coarsely chopped (or a combination)
¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon sultanas or desiccated coconut, optional
2 tablespoons crushed pistachio, optional, to serve
One quantity of syrup.

Preheat oven to moderate 180°C (350°F/Gas mark 4).  

Combine nuts, sugar and spices in a bowl.  

Pull apart the Konafa and separate the strands into a bowl.  

Pour melted butter over Konafa and mix thoroughly with your fingers to coat and separate the strands.  

Put half the pastry into a large, deep, round dish, and flatten with the palm of your hand.  Spread the nut mixture evenly over it and cover with the remaining pastry.  Flatten the top again.  

Bake for 45 - 60 minutes or until the Konafa is golden in colour.  Remove the Konafa from the oven and turn out onto a baking tray and then again onto a serving plate.  Pour the cool syrup over the hot Konafa.  

Serve with crushed pistachio nuts. 

Note : Do not store in the fridge or it will go soggy.

Konafa كنافة Kataifi
Konafa كنافة Kataifi

No comments:

Post a Comment