In case you didn’t know, we had a recent delivery at the family of 6 new members. It’s Olly, guys, Olly the cat. She gave birth to SIX CUTE KITTENS last Sunday giving us a shock for the number of kitten she had been carrying. Never a dull moment passed for Olly. She climbed the screen door, jumped on the street, played, went crazy and all sort of things a young cat would do. BUT SHE HAD SIX KITTENS GROWING INSIDE HER!!!
Olly is now at home, taking care of her furry cute little things. She looks so tiny. We still can’t believe that it happened. Sitting in her box all day around her kids, she is taking good care of these kittens. It is wonderful to see it happen in front of your eyes; birth and growing up. She is licking them, keeping them clean, keeping herself clean, well-fed and hydrated. All of that is happening according to instinct. Makes you wonder sometimes about human affection and instinct too, right?
It is customary, whenever there is a newborn in the families of the Levant, to prepare a traditional dessert for the occasion. This dessert is a spice pudding with ornaments of desiccated coconut flakes, raisins, pistachios, walnuts, almonds and pine nuts making it one fancy dessert reserved for such delightful occasions. The pudding is infused with the warming flavors of cinnamon, caraway and anise. In Arabic, it is called Meghlé, which literally means boiled. But it is served chilled in individual bowls topped with the nuts right before serving.
Meghlé is also prepared on Christmas to celebrate the birth of Jesus, serving it to people visiting and greeting each other along with sugar-coated almond candies, chocolate and flavored liquor shots.
Make it now, even if you don’t have any newborn in the family.
Meghlé – Spiced Levantine Pudding
- 1 cup Rice flour
- 1 1/4 cup Sugar
- 1 tbsp Cinnamon
- 1 tbsp Caraway
- 1/2 tbsp anis powder
- 7 cups water (room temperature)
- Desiccated coconut flakes
- Coarsely ground pistachios
- Coarsely ground walnuts
- Almonds (soaked in water a night before, drained before serving)
- Pine nuts (soaked in water a night before, drained before serving)
- In a large pot, mix all the ingredients and stir to combine
- On high heat and non-stop stirring, bring the pot to a boil
- Once you see the mixture bubbling, turn off the heat
- Scoop into individual bowls or large shallow serving bowl. Cover with cling film (touching the surface of the pudding) to prevent a crust from forming. Skip if you don’t mind that
- Chill. Before serving, top with your favorite toppings.
A note on the side:
I was trying the on-black photography technique. Let me know what do you think.
BTW, nothing fancy. Just my camera, desk lamp, tracing paper, foam board and a black board. I used cushions and a bag for support
16 thoughts on “Meghlé (Spiced Levantine Pudding) and The Birth of More New Members”
Lovely kittens and a great recipe I’ve heard about many times, I wonder what it tastes like, those quantities of spices are so huge, but then I guess that’s what we want! I like the photos as well.
The amount of spices is fine compared to water quantity. They will give a good flavor altogether. Give it a try.
Im glad you liked the photos. I don’t always have access to daylight and don’t always cook/bake on weekends. So this might come to the rescue
Love the recipe and great photography technique! 🙂 Mabrouk for the kittens! 🙂
Thank you! I’ll develop the technique from there
I forgot to get the anis powder. But i have seeds. Do you think the flavor will come out the same if I made anis tea and cooled it?
ps: the kittens are too cute. >.<
pps: i absolutely love the photos.
You can do that I guess. Boil some with the water quantity mentioned, cool it, measure it again and mix all the ingredients in and proceed with the rest of the recipe. I guess it would be fine. Or you can grind it into a powder.
Let me know how it works
Pingback: 20 Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes to Cook During Lent | Cookin' five square meters
At the time of bubbling you can add orangeblossom water,bergamot rind or a pinch of mastic of Chios(Constantinopolite variants).
Sounds like an unusual mix aromas. I’m intrigued to figure out how would the caraway and cinnamon taste with the zesty orange flavors.
Give it a try! In contrast to the Levant tradition we boil wheat,then dry it up, mix it with same spices and/ or ground coriander,chopped parsley, pomegranate beads and nuts,mix it with sugar and
offer it to the memory of the departed.(afet they have been blessed by the priest)Α thick batter type of liquid remains after boiling the wheat in which we add starch and poceed the same way.
Enjoy some Greek music ,since you are far I can not offer you anything edible.
That is quite a paradoxical taste. Parsley, spiced and sugar. That sounds like something I should experiment with soon. Any recipe or a name I should search for to get this dish with an interesting story?
Oh, we make a All Saints Day dessert with wheat berries flavored with anise and nuts. It’s on the blog as well.
Give it a look:http://orthodoxwiki.org/Kollyva
Hello, I’m new to your blog.. and I’ve made the apple pie, working on the plum/grape-!! Curios, what happened to Ollie and her kittens please?
Haha good to know you’re liking the recipes.
We had to give three of them away. One of the remaining was lost due to an accident, the second was probably poisoned a few days after the loss of the previous one, and the third fell ill a month before he was one year old.
Olly is doing fine though. She’s a crazy feisty cat
Pingback: Cheese Boards and Christmas in the Camp | Cookin' five square meters
Pingback: Al Nakba and Palestinian Recipes | Cook in Five Square Meters