Wednesday, May 1, 2013

What Mama's Cooking: Knafeh à la Crème

I’d like to introduce everyone to my dear Mama, who will be joining me on the blog every now and again to share her delicious recipes and forays in cooking. My Mom is an excellent cook, if I do say so myself, and people have told her many time that if they were guaranteed cooking of her caliber, they would happily go vegetarian. Plus, she’s my Mom, and has taught me everything I know about the kitchen. So please welcome her and enjoy all of her delicious meals. Without further ado, here's Mama...

I know very little about Middle Eastern cuisine and cooking. My experiences were limited to the ubiquitous hummus, tabbouleh and falafel of Mediterranean restaurants until I visited an Afghan restaurant in the Boston area, The Helmand in Cambridge. We had a sampling of their vegetarian offerings including delicious lentil stuffed peppers and a sweet pumpkin dish. Over the ensuing years I have searched the Internet and through cookbooks at libraries and in bookstores for similar recipes without luck. I eventually found the recipe for their Kaddo Bourani, the pumpkin dish, on this blog,but never found the lentil dish. Oh, well. Fast forward to my husband's birthday this year. No, I did not stumble upon the wonderful blend of spices in those lentils and cook those two dishes for him, but he was open to an untraditional birthday cake that I was looking forward to trying.
Knafeh à la Crème was a recipe that I found in The New York Times. The shredded phyllo dough was surprisingly easy to find in Rochester, NY at Lombardi's Gourmet Imports & Specialties, but is also available here. The dessert has a custard-like filling that was delicately scented and flavored with lemon and orange blossom water. The results were unique and delicious. Perhaps you can find a special occasion to give it a try, too.
xx Mama and Molly

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