Cream of wheat pudding (Ma’mouniyeh)

blog mamounieh Here is a traditional (and ancient) Middle-Eastern pudding that can be prepared very easily with ingredients from any mainstream supermarket. It is named after the ninth century Caliph Ma’moun (revered by some and loathed by others). It is so simple to make, yet it is a celebratory dessert. It is also prepared for a special breakfast and garnished with toasted nuts or melted white cheese or whipped cream.

  INGREDIENTS: 4 to 6 servings

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon orange blossom water or other flavoring such as vanilla
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter or oil
  • 1 cup cream of wheat (for a coarser texture) or semolina flour
  • Garnish: pistachios, chopped fine. Pine nuts, toasted or panfried till golden-brown. Almonds, toasted. 

1. Place the water and sugar in a saucepan; bring to a boil, lower the heat to medium and simmer for a few minutes. Add the orange blossom water and set aside.

  2. Melt the butter over medium heat and add the semolina or cream of wheat; stir constantly until the mixture is light brown and a toasted fragrance comes-up. Gradually add the syrup, stirring, until the mixture thickens (which takes just minutes). Transfer to a bowl or several ramequins. Garnish with the nuts and serve immediately. 

NOTE: Other flavorings include saffron, which can be diluted in a few tablespoons of water and added to the semolina. Some people like to add shredded cheese to this pudding as it cooks, melting the cheese.  Blog cream of wheat puddin

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  1. Posted July 21, 2014 at 4:53 am | Permalink

    This is a fantastic and refined tasting dessert!



  2. Lola E.
    Posted July 21, 2014 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    Hi Joumana,

    What kind of cheese you recommend that we can add to this pudding?? akkawi for example..?? Thanks

  3. Joumana
    Posted July 21, 2014 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    @Lola E. Yes, akkawi is great or one called majdouleh which looks like a braided cheese, white and firm; they are all basically like mozzarella. I did a post a few years back on incorporating the cheese in the pudding. Here is the link to it.

  4. Posted July 22, 2014 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

    omg! i must add this to My new recipe book and try to cook it too.. Miss Joumana I’m so glad I’ve found your blog! xx

  5. Posted July 22, 2014 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

    I saw the reply on Facebook about the name of your dessert but only now reading the ingredients I realized I was also right, as this is what we call halvas in Greece. Love it!

  6. Joumana
    Posted July 23, 2014 at 4:39 am | Permalink

    @Glyn: I am so glad to have discovered your bakery/pastry shop! A must next time I am in New York!

  7. Sylva
    Posted July 23, 2014 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    What a lovely dish this is. My mom made it all the time. It is so comforting.
    This is the most luxurious presentation for Mamouniyeh I’ve ever seen! Joumana it’s Delicious :)

  8. Joumana
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    @Sylva: Thanks dear Sylva, so interesting to hear your family ate it regularly! Ours did not :(

  9. Posted July 28, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    Ma chère Joumana, j’ai traduit ton article l’ai lu trois fois…et j’ai regardé pas moins de 10 fois la photo du bol avec les graines de pignons grillés et me suis imaginée juste en train de la savourer en admirant un paysage bien de chez toi accompagné d’un bon thé. Merci d’avoir fait voyager mes papilles ça me rappelle des souvenirs d’enfance. Bien cordialement

  10. Joumana
    Posted July 28, 2014 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

    @VEB je suis ravie de t’avoir fait plaisir!

  11. Posted August 1, 2014 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    I was never a fan of cream of wheat as a breakfast cereal as a kid, but this treat sounds quite fabulous!

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