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Chocolate muhallabeya with Arabic coffee granita

New Feast_Muhallabeya

Serves 4  | By Greg Malouf


Chocolate muhallabeya
• 60g caster (superfine) sugar
• 30g cornflour (cornstarch)
• 500 ml milk
• 40g best-quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), chopped
• 125 ml water
• ½ tsp instant coffee granules
• Chocolate-coated coffee beans, to garnish (optional)

Arabic coffee granita
• 4 tsp caster (superfine) sugar
• 250 ml water
• 3 cardamom pods, roughly crushed
• 2 ½ tsp instant coffee granules
• 1 gelatine leaf
Arabic coffee syrup
• 4 tsp caster (superfine) sugar
• 250 ml water
• 3 cardamom pods, roughly crushed
• 2 ½ tsp instant coffee granules



To make the granita, combine the sugar and water in a saucepan and heat gently, swirling the pan from time to time, until the sugar dissolves. Add the cardamom pods, then increase the heat, bring to the boil and simmer for 1 – 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to cool for an hour.


Transfer 250 ml of the syrup to a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Stir in the instant coffee and remove from the heat. Soak the gelatine leaf in a dish of cold water for a minute, until soft and slippery. Squeeze it to get rid of any excess water and add to the hot coffee syrup. Cool for a few minutes, then stir into the remaining syrup. Strain into a rigid plastic container and freeze until firm.


Make the coffee syrup in the same way, but without the gelatine. Leave the syrup to cool.


 To make the muhallabeya, combine the sugar and cornflour in a small bowl and gradually mix in 125 ml of the milk to make a very smooth paste. Melt the chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water (make sure the bowl doesn’t actually touch the hot water).


Combine the rest of the milk and the water in a large saucepan. Add the cornflour paste, melted chocolate and coffee granules, stirring well. Bring to the boil, stirring continuously. Once the mixture boils, remove from the heat and leave to cool slightly before pouring into attractive glasses. Make sure you don’t fill the glasses full, but leave space to spoon on a generous layer of the granita or coffee syrup.


When ready to serve, scrape the surface of the granita with a spoon or fork to create crystals and layer on top of the muhallabeyas. Alternatively, spoon over some of the coffee syrup. Garnish with a few chocolate-coated coffee beans, if you like, and serve straight away.
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