- 1 Chicken (cut into 8 pieces, skin off)
- 1 Medium White Onion
- 2 Dried Limes
- 2 Cinnamon Sticks
- 8 Cardamom Pods
- 3 Garlic Cloves or 1 TBSP Garlic Paste
- 3 Cups of Basmati Rice
- 4 Cups of Water (about 1 litre, use the same cup you use for rice)
- 3 Tsp Baharat
- 2 TBSP Tomato Puree
- 3 Tomatoes (chopped small)
- 1/2 a Bell Pepper (Green or Red)
- 10g Coriander (Chopped finely)
- 2 Green Chillies (optional)
- 50g Blanched Almonds (optional)
- 1/2 Fresh Pomegranate (optional)
- Vegetable Oil
- Coat your saucepan with enough oil to cover the bottom.
- Add your onions and sauté for around 5 minutes to sweat the onions and let them turn slightly brown on their edges.
- Once they are ready add in your garlic, spices, and dried limes, stir well and fry for a following 2-4 mins, on a low to medium heat.
- Add in your tomato puree, stir through.
- Add in your chicken pieces and fry for 6-8 minutes to cook the out of the chicken slightly and take on the spices.
- Add the cut up tomatoes and bell pepper.
- Add in your water, along with some salt. Place on a medium to high heat, place a lid on top and leave to bubble away for 20 minutes, until your chicken is cooked through.
- Once cooked, add in your washed rice and reduce the temperature to the lowest setting, place a teacloth around your saucepan lid and place on top - this will help create more steam and make your rice extra fluffy. This will need about 20 minutes to cook.
- In the meantime toast your almonds in a pan till they are golden.
- Once your rice is cooked, you are ready to serve up with a sprinkle of almonds, coriander and poms!
- 675g Plain Flour or Chapati Flour (plus extra for dusting)
- 250ml of boiling Water
- 200ml room temp Water
- 300g Dates (with seeds)
- 1 TSP Salt
- 3 TBSP Hot Ghee or Hot Vegetable Oil if you want them Vegan
- 200g Warm Ghee (For Rolling & Frying)
- Begin by de-pitting your dates.
- Soak the dates in the boiling water and either leave over night or for a couple of hours to soften.
- Once soaked, begin to macerate them and massage them with your hands to break them down till you have a pulp.
- Either in a large bowl or stand mixer, combine the flour, date pulp, water, salt & ghee.
- Mix the ingredients together by hand or on a low speed (in your mixer) until it all comes together in a ball.
- Then knead for 15-20 minutes by hand or knead 10 minutes on a medium speed in your mixer.
- After kneading, your dough should be soft and smooth. Cover the bowl with cling film and leave to rest for 1 hour.
- After the rest, divide your dough into 8 balls (if you want large breads) or 14 (if you want smaller breads).
- Taking one ball at a time, roll them out as thin as possible, ideally trying to keep them square, but don’t worry too much.
- If you are struggling to roll them out thin, place a bit of warm ghee on your surface and on the dough and it should help to spread.
- Once you have spread it out as thin as possible, drip two teaspoons of warm ghee onto the dough. Using your hands spread it all around, making sure there are no dry parts.
- We now want to fold it into a small square. So take the right side and fold it into the middle. Then take the left side and fold it into the middle and top of the right side. So you will be left with a rectangle.
- Then take the bottom of the rectangle and fold into the middle, followed by folding the top into the middle.
- Flip over and you should be left with a neat square.
- Place on a plate, cover with cling film or a cloth and repeat this with all the rest of the balls.
- Once you have rolled and folded them into squares, begin again doing the exact same process, but you don’t need to roll them out as thin as the first time, but you need them big enough to fold.
- You want to roll out your squares, keeping the shape, and refolding to create extra layers.
- Repeat with all of your squares and then leave to rest for at least 30 minutes.
- Heat a non stick frying pan on medium - high heat.
- Take one dough square and roll it out, keeping the square shape, till it is about a coin thick.
- Place in your frying pan and take a teaspoon of hot ghee and spread it round the edge of the dough.
- Allow the bread to fry slightly so you can pick it up and flip it over, and then take some more ghee and put around the edges of the other side.
- Press down on the edges so they begin to fry well - we want them to be slightly crunchier with a softer middle which is why you put ghee there first.
- Flip over the bread and put some ghee all over, then flip again and also spread a bit of ghee all over. We don’t want try bread!
- Using your spatula press down on the bread, and rotate it in the pan at the same time, to make sure that it browns evenly on all sides.
- Flip it over do the same thing. If they are browning too quick, make sure to reduce the heat incase it cooks too fast on the outside.
- Once you are happy that they are fully browned and cooked through, place on a plate and repeat with the rest!
- 500g granulated sugar
- 300ml water
- Pinch of saffron
- 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 180ml double cream
- Pinch of ground cardamom
- 30g fine semolina
- 1 tsp cornflour
- 500g kunafa or shredded filo pastry, fresh or frozen (if using frozen, remember to thaw before using)
- 227g ghee or butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 600g grated mozzarella cheese
- 1 block of halloumi - pre-soaked and drained
- 1 tub of ricotta
- On a medium to high heat, put your sugar, water, saffron and lemon juice into a saucepan. Do not stir it otherwise the sugar will crystallise. Leave it on a low heat for roughly 10 minutes or until all the sugar has dissolved.
- Set aside to cool
- In a small saucepan (not on the hob), combine the double cream, cardamom, semolina and cornflour.
- Turn the heat to medium-high and cook, stirring constantly with a whisk. Bring to the boil and continue cooking until the mixture thickens into a loose pudding-like consistency.
- Once done, set aside to cool.
- Preheat oven to 200C
- Warm the ghee until completely melted and allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl, break up the kunafa pastry into smaller pieces and pour in the melted ghee. Mix with your hands until the ghee is incorporated with the pastry.
- Take your baking tin and line it with half of the shredded buttery pastry. Be sure to push it up the sides - this will ensure the filling doesn’t spill out.
- Now for the cheese. Make sure you have rinsed off the halloumi and patted it dry. Chop it up into small chunks. Crumble up the ricotta on a separate plate and drain any moisture. Keep your grated mozzarella separate, too.
- Begin filling your kunafa with a layer of ashta and a layer of mozzarella, halloumi and ricotta.
- Once filled, cover with the remaining shredded pastry, then place in the oven for 30 minutes.
- Once your kunafa is golden and crispy, remove from the oven and carefully flip your cake tin upside down onto a flat plate.
- Now you can begin decorating your kunafa. Top with the cold syrup, crushed pistachios, rose petals and rosebuds. Cut yourself a slice, drench it in even more syrup and enjoy the sweet cheese filling oozing out of the crunchy pastry.