Qamhyieh means “wheaty” and is simply boiled wheat mixed with dried fruits and nuts, sweetened with sugar and scented with orange blossom water. You could say it’s our local take on granola!
Here is another version of sfouf, sweetened with granulated sugar and colored and spiced with turmeric. It’s a very simple dessert to prepare that just needs mixing by hand.
Semsemyieh is a typical souk dessert, made of toasted sesame seeds and ground almonds set in a sweet syrup, though it could also be made from chopped cashews, or all almonds, or pistachios.
Meghli is the “newborn” sweet. Whenever a mother gives birth, meghli is the first thing to prepare at home to offer to family and guests. And since Christmas is about a newborn, too, meghli is served as a Christmas dessert in the mountains.
Fried sweets are a staple of party days, when village squares are filled with cauldrons of boiling frying oil producing a variety of fried treats.
Damascus is known for its apricots, which are preserved as dried fruits or as ammaredin, thick apricot paste dried in sheets, which must be soaked and diluted in water to make the khoshaf.
Sfouf is a simple butter-free, egg-free cake made from flour and carob molasses. Simple and healthy, it’s the definitive mountain sweet.
Adding sweet spices such as nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon or a pinch of salt enhances sweetness without adding calories.
Zalebieh is a kind of Middle Eastern doughnut that is usually fried. Our Zalebieh is healthfully baked.
You will need a durable plastic bag as an essential tool. Region: Chouf