Awwameh, loqaimat or loqmet el kadi are not only Arabic tongue twisters. They are all names for a popular middle eastern dessert.
By Sawsan Abu Farha
Awwameh is basically a yeasted dough that is fried and then sweetened with rosewater syrup. You bite into them and you get a little burst of rosewater syrup perfectly balanced by the light and fluffy cooked dough.
You will probably find as many ways to make awwameh as there are ways to spell it. All purpose flour, rice flour and semolina find their way into recipes just as potatoes, soda, sprite and corn starch. Different formulas and combinations in an attempt to get those perfect little balls that are crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside.
Awwameh can be infused with different flavors by adding spices to the batter like anise or cinnamon . You can also infuse the syrup by adding some cardamom pods or cinnamon sticks to it.
I am sharing my mum’s recipe for the crunchiest awwameh you will ever taste. It stays crunchy even after it cools down. Now the big question and the challenge that I will leave you with is, can you stop at only one?
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon of rosewater
- 1 cup flour
- ⅓ cup cornflour
- 1 teaspoon yeast (or 1 teaspoon baking powder)
- pinch of salt
- ½ cup water
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- In a pot add the sugar, water and lemon juice
- cook over medium heat until it comes to a boil and all the sugar had dissolved
- lower the heat and cook for 2-5 more minutes.
- take off the heat and allow to cool then stir in the rosewater
- Proof the yeast by mixing it with the water and sugar and waiting for it to foam and bubble (if it doesn’t then the yeast has gone bad and you can’t use it)
- mix the flour and cornstarch and slat and then add the yeast mixture and stir with a spoon.
- Your batter should be like the cake batter (you may need to add more water or flour depending on the type of flour you use but do it one tablespoon at a time)
- Stir the batter for 2-4 minutes
- Cover and allow to rise in a warm place until it doubles in size.
- If you use baking powder, just mix all the ingredients together until the mix is homogenous
- Fill part of the batter in a small plastic bag, tie it
- Cut one of the corners off (the size of the opening depends on how big you want your awwameh to be , the smaller the opening, the smaller the awwameh)
- Heat the oil until you drop a little of the dough and it fizzes immediately
- prepare a small cup filled with oil and a teaspoon
- Hold the bag in your hand and squeeze a little of the batter onto the wet tea spoon
- Drop the dough in the hot oil and repeat.
- you will need to wet the spoon in the oil after every few times because the batter will stick to it.
- stir the dough balls in the oil to ensure they get golden on all the sides.
- Take the awwameh out of the oil and into the syrup (the syrup should be room temperature)
- Stir the awwameh in the syrup until it is uniformly coated and then take it out.