Kunafa – the famous Middle Eastern Cheese filled Dessert Pastry.
The Recipe Intro includes a short Video. Check it out↓ .
- 484g raw kunafa dough (shredded filo pastry – you’ll find it in the freezer section)
- ½-¾ cup lukewarm butter(unsalted) or clarified butter (ghee)
- ½ cup milk
- 180- 200 gms shredded mozzarella
- ½ cup ground pistachio and cashew nut mixture
FOR white sauce:
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 2 Tbsp flour
- 1 cup milk
- 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp ground cardamom - optional
- Pinch of salt
FOR the syrup:
- 200 gms / 1 cup sugar
- 100 gms / ½ cup water
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp rose water
- Preheat oven to 175°C.
- Melt the butter.
- Place the raw kunafa dough in a big bowl and separate, using your fingers. Use a food processor to pulse a few times to make this step easier.
- Add the melted butter and milk. Toss to mix thoroughly.
- Lightly grease a 24 cm cake pan ( I use a spring form cake pan for easier release) and add orange food coloring if desired for the signature ‘Kunafa’ color. In middle eastern shops Kunafa Coloring is available.
- Add 2/3 rd of the buttered kunafa dough mix to the cake pan. Press down with the bottom of a steel tumbler for a smooth base.
- Bake the base for 7-8 minutes and meanwhile prepare the white sauce and sugar syrup.
- Sugar syrup: Add the sugar and water to a saucepan. Bring to boil. Add lime juice. Simmer 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in rose water.
- White Sauce: Melt butter in saucepan, add flour, stir till thickened.
- Using a spatula, cover the precooked base of kunafa and top with half of the shredded mozzarella.
- Spread all the white sauce over this and then top with remaining cheese.
- Return to oven and bake till cheese is melted.
- Top with the remaining kunafa dough mix and smooth the top but pressing gently.
- Place in the oven for approximately 12 more minutes until golden brown. (Oven temps may vary- please be watchful).
- Decorate with a mixture of ground pistachio and cashew nuts.
- Pour the syrup(which has cooled slightly) on top of the kunafa evenly, cool for 10 minutes and serve.
- You can replace rose water with orange blossom water if desired.
- Make sure to use fresh kataif pastry for best results.
- Use freshly grated cheese – it makes a bug difference.
Key Ingredients: kataifi pastry, cheese, flour, butter, milk, cream sugar, rose water, spice, nuts.
EAT AND TELL!!!
Let us know if you tried – Kunafa