Oriental blancmange

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This recipe is halfway between the Persian dessert recipe “Yakh dar Behesht” (literally: ice cream in paradise) and the Lebanese dessert “Mouhalabieh” (which would itself be from a Persian recipe). It is a kind of flan or panna cotta (or blancmange), made from milk thickened with flour, slightly sweetened and perfumed with orange blossom and rose water. On top, a touch of honey and pistachio chips sublimate this dessert.

Oriental blancmange

Servings 4
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 7 minutes
Resting time 2 hours

Ingredients

  • 50 cl whole milk
  • 35 to 40 sugar
  • 40 g rice flour
  • 3 capsules of cardamom
  • 1 + ½ tbsp rose water
  • 1 + ½ tbsp natural orange blossom flavor
  • a sweet honey acacia flower type
  • A handful of unsalted peeled pistachios

Instructions

  • In a saucepan, whisk together milk and flour.
  • Once the mixture is well homogenized, add the cardamom capsules slightly open.
  • Whisk continuously while heating the mixture over medium heat. It should begin to thicken after about ten minutes. If the mixture reaches boiling point, lower the heat.
  • When the mixture starts to thicken, add the sugar, mix well, and continue cooking for 4 minutes, then lower the heat to minimum. You can taste the mixture to adjust the amount of sugar to your taste!
  • Add 1 tsp of rose water and 1 tsp of orange blossom, stir with the whisk, and stop cooking after 2 minutes.
  • Pour into small ramekins, let cool and put in the refrigerator for at least two hours (or overnight).
  • Just before serving, dilute a little honey with rose water and orange blossom and pour over the blancmange. Finely chop the pistachios and sprinkle over them.

Notes

Note: according to the quantity of flour, you will obtain a more or less thick consistency. You can play on it according to the texture you prefer. I would say that Yakh dar Behesht is thicker and more consistent than Mouhalabieh.
There are lots of possible variations!
First of all, if you don’t like it, you can remove the cardamom.
Then you can choose to put only rose water or orange blossom to mark more of one of these flavors.
Rice flour can be replaced by corn starch (more frequently used in Mouhalabieh recipes). You can add slivered almonds as a garnish.
For pistachio fans, why not add a small spoonful of pistachio paste to the milk?
For a vegan version: try the recipe with almond milk or rice milk and replace honey with a homemade syrup.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Keyword: Pistachio

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