Halawet el Jibn Lebanese sweet cheese and semolina rolls

Halawet el Jibn Lebanese sweet cheese and semolina rolls

For the sugar syrup (Halawet el Jibn Syrup)

2 cups caster sugar
1 cup water
½ teaspoon lemon juice
¾ teaspoon orange blossom water
¾ teaspoon rose water

For the cheese rolls
1½ cup water
¾ cup caster sugar
1 cup fine semolina
230gr mozzarella cheese
1 tablespoon rose water
1 tablespoon orange blossom water

For the filling
400gr Ashta (Lebanese clotted cream)
For decorating:
Crushed pistachios
Rose petals jam

  • Instructions
  • Go ahead and make the Ashta cream first you’ll find my recipe on my website
  • Sugar Syrup:
  • In a saucepan on medium-high heat, add the sugar, water and lemon juice.
  • Bring to a boil, then immediately reduce the heat and simmer on low heat for 12 minutes. The syrup should thicken slightly. Make sure to use a timer because if the syrup cooks longer, it may thicken too much.
  • Stir in the orange blossom water and rose water at the end of cooking.
  • Transfer to a glass bowl and let cool to room temperature.
  • Cheese rolls
  • In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, cook the water and sugar together, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves.
  • Bring to a boil then add the fine semolina, stirring constantly with a spatula until it is well mixed and slightly thickened (about 30 seconds).
  • Reduce the heat then add the cheese and rose water, and mix well over low to medium heat until the cheese has melted and the mixture forms a soft and homogeneous dough.
  • Allow to cool until the mixture is warm enough to handle.
  • Divide the dough into 2 equal parts.
  • Take one first half of the dough and reserve the other half in a cloth.
  • Place the dough on a sheet of parchment paper and cover with another sheet.
  • Using a rolling pin, roll the dough between the 2 sheets into a rectangle of about 9 x 13 inches (23 x 33 cm).
  • Remove the top sheet.
  • Using a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut the uneven sides of the dough to obtain a neat rectangle.
  • Add the ashta into a piping bag and cut about 1 inch (2 cm) from the tip.
  • Spread the ashta on the long side closest to you, about 1 inch (2 cm) from the side.
  • Using the edge of the parchment paper under the dough, lift the dough and wrap it over the cream, until the cream is completely covered. The sealed dough looks like a thin log.
  • Using a sharp knife, make a cut along the log to cut it from the rest of the dough.
  • Repeat this procedure to create 2 additional logs.
  • For cleaner cuts, place the logs in the freezer for about 20 minutes to firm them up a bit. Then, using a sharp knife, divide the logs into 2-inch (5 cm) pieces, to obtain about 30 pieces.
  • Repeat the exact same procedure with the second piece of dough reserved in the cloth.

To serve
Arrange the semolina rolls on a serving tray, sprinkle each with a little ground pistachios in the center and rose petal jam.
Serve alongside the syrup, drizzling each piece before eating.
Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

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