Rediscovering Palestinian Cuisine

Halawat Al-Smeed (Semolina Pudding)

Halawat Al-Smeed (Semolina Pudding)

Halawet al Smeed

Halawet al-Smeed is a middle eastern dessert that consists of milk, smeed (semolina), and sugar stirred constantly over heat until it thickens, covered with cheese and then baked in the oven. It’s a nightmare if you are lactose intolerant, but definitely worth it. It is then topped with bread crumbs, pistachios and/or almonds and cooled. It can be served with rose scented simple syrup for added sweetness!


7 cups of water
1 cup semolina
11 tbs powdered milk
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon rose water
1 tablespoon butter
Jibneh Nabulsiah (a sweet cheese made in Nablus) or Mozzeralla, which is a good substitute

Prepare the Attar, or simple syrup first so that it is cooled. This recipe makes about 1 1/2 cups of syrup. You will need:
2 cups of sugar
1 cup of water
1 teaspoon rose water

Combine sugar and water over high heat to dissolve sugar. Bring it to a boil, then turn the heat to low and simmer until it reaches a syrupy consistency (about 5-7 minutes). When syrup is cooled to room temperature, add 1 teaspoon rose water.

For the Semolina Pudding:

1. Add water, semolina, powdered milk and sugar in a pot, bring to boil.
2. Keep stirring the mixture until it thickens (pudding consistency)
3. When thick, stir in rose water and butter. Remove from heat.
4. Heat the oven to 350F
5. Add half the mix to your Pyrex or baking dish
6. Cover the mixture with shredded cheese (you can use traditional Nabulsi cheese, but if hard to find you can also use mozzarella like we did).
7. Add the rest of the mix to cover the cheese layer
8. Bake in oven for 20 minutes, until top is firm and the cheese is melted.
Add the pistachios/almonds or bread crumbs, then bake for another 10 min. Serve hot with sweet syrup (attar) lightly poured on top, or honey.



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