I have had a hankering for this booza al-mushmush ever since I left Beirut a couple months ago. There is a couple in Achrafieh (Beirut) who make the most amazing Arabic ice-cream. Their place of business is smaller than most closets. If you walk by the street, you will see them roasting almonds, hulling strawberries, chopping on the one and only marble board. They do not advertise, in fact, there is hardly a sign on the door, except for a handwritten one in Arabic with a list of flavors and prices by the kilo. Their name is Hanna, in case you happen to be in Achrafieh.
My favorite is theapricot booza. It is nicely studded with pine nuts and pistachios. I wanted to recreate it, like, today!
It took me all of 10 minutes of preparation and I am willing to bet anyone who knows Hanna’s that mine is awfully close! Now I did have some apricot nectar in the fridge, sitting in a jug and not getting consumed. I had made it using leftover amardeen sheets, soaking them in water overnight and throwing the mixture in the blender with several spoonfuls of sugar.
- 250 g or half a package of amardeen or 1 quart or 1 pint of apricot nectar
- sugar, to taste
- 1/4 cup of pine nuts, previously soaked in water for 2 hours and drained
- 1/4 cup of pistachios, peeled and chopped coarsely (soak in hot water for 2 hours and peel)
- If using the sheets of amardeen, soak them the day before in water to cover by one inch.
- The next day, pour the whole mixture in a blender, adding sugar as you blend, one tablespoon at a time.
- If using the apricot nectar, don’t do anything! unless you want to sweeten it more, then add a simple syrup of sugar melted in water ( for instance, 1 cup of sugar in 1/2 cup of water, heat and boil for 3 minutes, let it cool)
- Pour the mixture in the ice-cream maker and let it churn happily until the mixture turns into a nice slush.
- Remove the ice-cream, place in a bowl and with a large wooden spoon, mix in the pistachios and the pine nuts.
- Place in the freezer for your subsequent enjoyment. Sahteyn!
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