Friday 20 August 2010

Ramadan Pastry with Shredded Coconut and Raisins: Kunafa bil Zabib wa Joz al Hind كنافة بالزبيب و جوز الهند

Kunafa is a pastry dessert eaten during Ramadan throughout most of the Arab world. The very fine threads of Konafa pastry are filled with sweet cheese, nuts or even mango. It can be made in a variety of ways, including in individual forms, or in a frying pan on the hob, but cooking it in the oven is probably the easiest when making a larger quantity.

500g konafa pastry
200g butter, melted

1 1⁄2 cups Sugar
2 cup water
2 tbsp orange blossom water/ rose water
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 lemon slice
1 cups walnuts, roughly chopped
1 cup sultanas or raisins
1cup shredded coconut
2 tbsp orange blossom water/ rose water
2 tbsp cinnamon
2 tbsp sugar

Qashta cream, whipped or double cream to serve

Prepare the syrup by combining the water and sugar and lemon. Simmer for 15-20 min until it reaches a syrupy consistency. Add orange blossom or rosewater and set aside to cool.

Loosen the stands of kunafa pastry with your hands, then pour melted butter over it and work it in.

 Mix the chopped walnuts with, sultanas, coconuts, cinnamon and sugar, add rose water and mix well.

Put half the pastry in a spring-form or loose base baking dish about 24 cm in diameter,  then spoon the walnuts, sultanas mix onto the pastry, spreading evenly. Cover with the remaining pastry, pressing it down with the palm of your hand.

 Cover with foil.

Bake in the oven at 220 degrees for 30 minutes, remove foil, return to oven until the top becomes golden. Remove from oven, place a plate over the tin and turn upside down, then pour the cool syrup over the hot pastry (or hot syrup over cold kunafa). Let it rest for 30 minutes.

 Serve warm or cold, with a spoonful of Qashta cream and a cup of Arabic coffee or  a glass of cold Qamar al Din!


  1. This looks delicious. I'm sure it tastes great too. Nothing's better than eating konafa after ftoor!

  2. Kunafa is definitely one of my favorites, especially the one with the cheese filling :)

  3. Tasnin, i tried this one. Didnt work good. Maybe here he dont have the correct konafa pastry. I took step by step but in the end the konafe taste like not cooked and it was hard to eat. :( can you help me on this one? What should i do to make it good?

  4. Sofia, sorry for not replying earlier, we missed your comment.

    Kunafa is cooked once it is golden in colour as in the photos. As described, you should cook it covered with foil first. When the edges are browned (as in photo) this indicates the bottom is done, so remove the foil and let the top brown which takes about 15 minutes.

    Kunfa dough really needs the syrup to soften it (almost inedible without it), but it is still supposed to be crispy - maybe its just not to your taste. Otherwise I can't think what went wrong, except maybe not pouring enough syrup or not giving it the kunafa enough time to absorb it.