Umm-Ali

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Umm Ali is an Egyptian dessert, almost like a bread pudding. Literally, Umm Ali means the mother of Ali but in the culinary world, Um Ali is a traditional dessert that was named after the lady who invented it. There are many stories behind the name of this dessert. Just google it and you can find many different kinds of stories, don’t know if which one is true. The only thing i know for sure is that Ali’s mother was a great cook as she was the one who gave birth to this amazing dessert.

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Basically, umm Ali consists of crushed bread pieces mixed with crushed nuts, covered in sweetened milk and topped with cream. It is then baked into a sweet bubbling blend of yumminess.

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Everyone has their own version of Umm Ali, some make it using phyllo dough or croissant, or simply stale bread. Some add coconut, others don’t; you could add any type of nuts. Bottom line; this recipe can be easily adapted to whatever is available in your kitchen pantry.

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I learnt this recipe from Umm-Mehez ( mother of Mehez), Shabana. She is my sis in law. Can’t thank her enough for passing on this recipe to me.

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3tbsp + 5tbsp sugar
6tbsp sweetened condensed milk
7 bread slices
2 tbsp shredded coconut
375 ml thick cream
1 3/4 or 2 cups milk (depending on how thick or loose you want your pudding to be)
1/4 cup each almonds and pistachios chopped
Few brown sugar for sprinkling on top

1. Cut the bread slices into small pieces. Add this to a medium sized casserole dish.
2. To that add in the coconut, almonds and pistachios. Spread it evenly.
3. Boil milk, condensed milk and 3tbsp of sugar in a separate pan. Pour this over the bread mixture. Let the bread soak up the milk for 10 mins.

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4. Beat 5 tbsp of sugar with thick cream and spread this on top of the bread plus milk mixture.
5. Sprinkle a few brown sugar on top.
6. Bake for 15 mins at 175 degree celsius.
7. Chill for at least 4-5 hrs.

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Notes:

✔Check for the sweetness and adjust the sugar and the condensed milk amount accordingly.
✔This dessert tastes its best when really cold.
✔Instead of the bread you can also use croissants or puff pastry.

 

Umm-Ali
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INGREDIENTS
  1. 3tbsp + 5tbsp sugar
  2. 6tbsp sweetened condensed milk
  3. 7 bread slices
  4. 2 tbsp shredded coconut
  5. 375 ml thick cream
  6. 1 3/4 or 2 cups milk (depending on how thick or loose you want your pudding to be)
  7. 1/4 cup each almonds and pistachios chopped
  8. Few brown sugar for sprinkling on top
DIRECTIONS
  1. Cut the bread slices into small pieces. Add this to a medium sized casserole dish.
  2. To that add in the coconut, almonds and pistachios. Spread it evenly.
  3. Boil milk, condensed milk and 3tbsp of sugar in a separate pan. Pour this over the bread mixture. Let the bread soak up the milk for 10 mins.
  4. Beat 5 tbsp of sugar with thick cream and spread this on top of the bread plus milk mixture.
  5. Sprinkle a few brown sugar on top.
  6. Bake for 15 mins at 175 degree celsius.
  7. Chill for at least 4-5 hrs.
Notes
  1. ✔Check for the sweetness and adjust the sugar and the condensed milk amount accordingly.
  2. ✔This dessert tastes its best when really cold.
  3. ✔Instead of the bread you can also use croissants or puff pastry.
Savory&SweetFood https://savoryandsweetfood.com/

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52 thoughts on “Umm-Ali

  1. Oh wow I will have to try this one soon! It looks absolutely delicious 😀 Or better still, I’ll come over to Kuwait and try the real thing straight from your kitchen!

  2. Oh wow. Yummy!
    I was just thinking about you yesterday. Glad you are back and with a sweet recipe :).
    Sadia,
    Can you do a guest post for me with a vegetarian dish or desert from Middle East for my international foo festival next week. If yes, kindly send me the recipe , 2 pictures, an intro to your dish and culture .
    I will publish it under your credit. I need it by next Wednesday.
    Let me know, my email is
    sonalgupta2001@hotmail.com
    Sonal

    1. Thanku soo much sonal. I am so happy dat u thot abt me for the guest post. Feelin very very happy. It would be my pleasure to be a part of it. I have a mediterranean dessert recipe. Will mail it to u k. See if it is fine 🙂

  3. Hi! I have only made the hot version… but this looks so much more presentable and beautiful than how mine comes out. Is there a preference over when to serve hot v. cold? or is it found prepared both ways in equal proportion? Looks amazing!

    1. Hii christina! Thanks fr the comment.
      Umm ali is usually served warm, but some serve it cold too. Its upto your taste and preference. I like it super cold. 🙂 Moreover in most places you get very loose and like how you said, not very presentable kinda consistency umm ali. If you want it like that, the amount of milk can be increased. I like a firmer pudding, so i use lesser milk. 🙂
      Hope this helped.

  4. Hey there! This looks delicious and we will be making it this weekend.
    I have a question though…
    “Thick cream” is not something I am familiar with. I’ve googled it, and the two answers that I found were 1.) heavy cream thickened with buttermilk, and 2.) milk and heavy cream thickened with gelatin.
    Are either of these what you’re referring to, or do you simply mean heavy cream?
    Any clarification will be greatly appreciated!!

    1. Hey there Shelby!
      Glad that you liked this recipe. Thick cream is not whipping cream or cream thickened with gelatin. We usually get a cream that is actually thick (not liquid like whipping cream) here in the middle-east. If that is not available where you live, you can also buy extra-thick double cream, which is more of a spooning cream. Hope this cleared your doubt, let me know if it didn’t.

    1. You mean to ask if you have to bake it? As preheating just speeds up the baking process. Do not bake it for long if you feel it gets dry. Reduce the cooking time and please let me know how it was. Hope it will turns out good.

  5. Mine too got very dry the third time ..maybe I had added lesser milk.Thats a hood idea to bake it for lesser time.,will do that next time.

    1. Oh no. I think I should update the recipe then. I’ll make it tomorrow again and see if changes needed. Thanks for letting me know. So first two times was it okay?

  6. I’m not sure if the dish I’m having is oven safe or not..there is nothing written or marked underneath it..can I make it in a cake tin without changing the remaining procedures? Please help!

  7. Hello dear,
    I have a doubt regarding the fourth step ….after spreading the cream on bread you have mentioned to pour milk mixture,is this the milk mixture which we have already poured on the bread to soak…do we have to reserve it to pour on top.

    1. Hii Shamina. No, you don’t have to pour the milk. I meant to say that you have to spread the cream on top of the bread which has been soaked in the milk. I know, the sentence there doesn’t make much sense. Will edit it soon.

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