Hot Summer in Full Swing? Try These 5 Refreshing Middle Eastern Desserts
Hot, hot, hot! It’s sweltering outside during the day, yet you’re craving something sweet? It may seem counter intuitive to have cravings when it’s too hot to think of eating, but there are some desserts that offer light, cool, and refreshing in every bite, making them perfect for warmer temperatures. In fact, this region is home to some of the most refreshing desserts out there, so let’s take a look at five you should definitely dig into the next time you feel like something on the sweet side.
Mouhalabiyeh is a popular cream dessert usually coated with syrup and pistachio, as much or as little as you like! It's very easy to make since it only requires a few ingredients such as sugar, milk, corn starch, and, for that added flavor of summer freshness, rose water.
Louqaimat are a popular bite-size dessert, essentially deep-fried dumplings coated with honey or sugar syrup. You can say that they're similar mini donuts, and they are definitely quite popular all year round, come rain or shine, especially during the holy month of Ramadan.
Lokum, also known in English speaking countries as Turkish Delight, is a popular gummy treat in Turkey and the Arab region. It is basically a starchy gel with sugar and comes in variety of flavors such as orange, lemon, and perhaps the most popular, rose water. You can find some with chopped nuts such as pistachios, walnuts, or even dried fruit like dates.
Mixed Fruit Juice with Ashta (AKA Cocktail Shikaf)
Perhaps you;ve tried a mixed fruit juice or two, but how about that with chunky pieces of fruit thrown into the mix and topped with a generous dollop of ‘ashta? Known as cocktail shikaf, this fresh mix of flavors is a favorite in its country of origin, Lebanon, a decent serving of sweetness that you can eat and drink simultaneously. That's because it consists of chopped fruits (usually at least 5 different types), and topped with a cream called "ashta," which is usually lightly flavored with rose water.
Masoub is a unique dessert said to originate from Yemen and one that is very popular across the entire Gulf region. A bowl of this Yemeni snack consists of bread, mashed bananas, and other ingredients such as cream, butter, milk, spices, nuts, or honey. It can be eaten anywhere, and it's especially served during breakfast.