This is an easy and quick dessert recipe. I learnt it from my friend Marwa when I met her for the very first time. She and her husband had invited me and my husband over for Ramadhan Iftar, which was delicious. When it was time for dessert she disappeared into the kitchen and looked flustered. I asked her, “What’s wrong?” and she said that the dessert she had prepared had not turned out right. I told her i did not mind, and that I would eat her dessert anyway. But she had plan b and it was this dessert. It was so quick and delicious that every time i saw her, i begged her for it. Too bad she left for Lebanon, and that I have to now make it for myself. LOL.
Well, here is the recipe everybody. You will need:
1) 2 cups of sugar
2) 3 cups of water
3) 3-4 tblsp of Orange Blossom Water
4) 1 bag of regular sliced white bread (20 oz bag)– break up the slices of bread with a knife or with your fingers and place in a bowl.
5) 2 cups of crushed pistachios (more or less as desired)
6) 2 small cans of Quishta(cream–Quishta is Arabic for Cream–you can get the Nestle brand labelled “Table Cream” in the Mexican food section at Cub Foods or of you course the easiest way is just to get it at one of the Middle Eastern stores around town)
Alright, start by making the sugar syrup. Boil the water and the sugar together until it is reduced to about 2 cups and a half of even 2 cups–it has to be a little thick. Once it is done, add one tblsp of Orange Blossom Water. Take 1/2 a cup of the sugar syrup and place in a frying pan and place on high heat and carmelize it. CARMELIZE IT AND DO NOT BURN IT. You want it a beautiful golden brown color.
Once it is carmelized, put it back into the rest of the syrup and mix well. If it starts to harden, boil it under low heat a little and keep on stirring. With that done, let it cool. You want it warm when you pour it over the bread.
Once it is warm, pour on the bread a little at at time and knead the two together either with your hand or with a spoon. How much sugar syrup you add will depend on how sweet you want it to be–I just stop when the bread is all moist. You do not want it to be wet and runny, you want to be able to
With that done, then divide the bread and sugar mixture into two. Take one part and pat it onto a regular dinner plate. You want to make a layer about 2 inches thick. Then take one of the cans of cream and smear it onto this layer, and sprinkle one tblsp of the Orange Blossom Water . Now you want another layer of the bread and sugar syrup on top of these two layers.
For the last layer, you can make the layer (of course it has to be the same size as the first) on a sheet of foil and then flip it onto the other two–BE GENTLE or else it will fall apart. Once you get this last layer on top then smear it with more cream and the rest of the Orange Blossom Water, and the pistachio. Leave in the refrigerator until it is time to serve. It does not necessarily have to be cold.
I cut it into triangular slices, as you would a cake and serve with unsweetened turkish coffee. It is ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS !