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Egyptian Desserts

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Egyptian desserts of pastry or puddings are usually drenched in honey syrup. Baklava (filo dough, honey, and nuts) is one of the less sweet; fatir are pancakes stuffed with everything from eggs to apricots, and basbousa, quite sweet, is made of semolina pastry soaked in honey and topped with hazelnuts.

Bbouzat haleeb or ice cream is a totally different experience from the rich American ice cream. Its quite light and gummy in texture. It actually stretches a bit as you spoon it. Misika (Arabic gum) and shalab (an extract from the tubers of orchids) can be found in most Mid-Eastern markets.

Umm ali is another national dish of Egypt, and is a raisin cake soaked in milk and served hot. Kanafa is a dish of batter "strings" fried on a hot grill and stuffed with nuts, meats, or sweets. Egyptian rice pudding is called mahallabiyya and is served topped with pistachios. French-style pastries are called gatoux. Most homes and places serve fresh fruits for desserts, and it makes a perfect, light conclusion to most meals.

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