Pancakes with clotted cream and cherry sauce

June 16, 2010  •  Category: ,


Atayef are the equivalent  of American pancakes; they contain no eggs; they are only cooked on one side; stuffed with either nuts or cream or cheese; served with a flavored  syrup.

Atayef  are considered a dessert, not a breakfast food; in Beirut, there are shops where people order these; you can get the clotted cream or ashta there and the syrup as well. They are the traditional pastries that are served during Ramadan.


  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup fine semolina
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1 teaspoon of dry yeast
  • 1 Tablespoon of dry milk powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon  of baking powder
  • 1 Tablespoon of sugar


  1. Proof the yeast by combining it with 1/4 cup of warm water, a teaspoon of sugar; place in a warm place and let it foam.
  2. In a small bowl, sift the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda; mix with a wire whisk.
  3. Pour one cup of  warm water into a bowl; add the powdered milk and stir to combine well.
  4. Mix with the wire whisk; add the flour mixture and stir; the consistency should be a little thicker than a crêpe batter. If the batter is too thick, add a little water.
  5. Heat a crêpe or pancake nonstick skillet till very hot; grease it with a half teaspoon of oil or spray it;  place the equivalent of 1/4 cup of batter in the skillet to  form a circle. Let it cook for a few minutes on one side; when it has formed little bubbles and it looks dry, take it out onto a plate. Do not flip it.
  6. As soon as all the atayefs are cooked, fill them with some ashta (cream), a bit of cherry coulis, pinching  on one end to form a spoon shape and place in a serving platter; serve right away or within one hour.

To make the ashta or cream: click here or substitute ricotta, sweetened with  sugar to taste.

To make the cherry sauce:

  1. I used a can of sour cherry jam, some fresh cherries deseeded and a tablespoon of starch (corn or wheat); bring to a simmer and stir until the mixture is thickened, about 3 minutes; cool and serve.
  2. Substitute: red currant jam with some fresh or frozen cherries.


74 Comments  •  Comments Feed

  1. Angie's Recipes says:

    Eggless pancakes! I must try! Still like them loaded with fresh seasonal fruit and Crème fraîche.

  2. Katerina says:

    This looks delicious and thr sour cherry jam is one of my favorites.

  3. Lentil Breakdown says:

    This reminds me of a crepe or a blintz. Delish, whichever the nationality!

  4. Priya says:

    Delicious and beautiful pancakes, makes me drool..

  5. Sasa says:

    Looks like you’re having a great time eating all Beirut has to offer. Clotted cream – drool…Looking so happy and gorgeous in the pic from the last post too!

  6. A Canadian Foodie says:

    Every country has a crepe…. and i love to learn about them all… some are better than others – but how could you go wrong with clotted cream?

  7. Susan says:

    I love the cute spoon shape created by the pinch on one end. They look delicious with the cream and cherries…what a delightful dessert!

  8. sweetlife says:

    clotted cream and eggless pancakes…oh how interesting…love the pic


  9. Rosa says:

    Wow, to die for!



  10. radia-recettes says:

    trop mignon ta recette, elle à l’air délicieuse, belle réalisation que j’aime beaucoup, merci joumana pour le partage.bisou

  11. Soma says:

    I have been trying to see if I could make something like pancakes without eggs. I never knew about these. These are way cuter tiny bites with the awesome cherry sauce!! Bookmarked. One lazy weekend this is going to happen 🙂

  12. Lyndsey says:

    I would love to try this, it makes it so elegant with the clotted cream. Nice looking dessert. Did you add some cherries that you got at the farmer’s market?

  13. john smith says:

    that looks tasty!

  14. rebecca says:

    wow these look great will make for my mum in law as she doesn’t eat eggs

  15. SYLVIA says:

    This is a perfect party dessert, incredibly tasty, I have been skeptical about making this dough, so I always buy it from a Mediterranean pastry shop. This is upscale dessert that never fails to impress, it is the easiest flavorful recipe I came across, I especially like how you used cherry jam instead of the maraschino cherry, I would also sprinkle chopped pistachios on top.This recipe is highly recommended, Joumana, you are awesome!!!!!!!

  16. deana says:

    yes… I love any kind of dish with sour cherries… this looks too easy to make and great flavor for the effort… interesting to have a pancake without egg!

  17. lisa says:

    Eggless pancakes? Sounds like something I will have to try. These look luscious topped with the sour cherry sauce — and I love the small size! The clotted cream gives a bit of elegance and sophistication too.

  18. Isabelle says:

    Magnifique et délicieux! J’adore, surtout avec la confiture de cerises!

  19. elra says:

    I would eat it for both dessert and breakfast, it just too delicious to skip. Clotted cream is my favorite.

  20. Mimi says:

    These would be tasty any time of day.

  21. Lisa says:

    THIS is what they serve at high tea instead of scones!! I love the idea of a pancake filled with clotted cream and beautiful cherry heaven. Gorgeous photos too!

  22. Sarah Galvin (All Our Fingers in the Pie) says:

    How interesting. These would be wonderful ‘bites’ at a party.

  23. noobcook says:

    a different pancake from what I’m familiar with but looks totally yummy with the creamy filling.

  24. Rajani says:

    sounds like a perfect b’fast to me!

    to answer your question abt. almond flour – i think its the same as almond meal, i picked it up from the local supermkt.

  25. sab says:

    the texxture lokks really light and smooth ….wonderful pancakes

  26. Cherine says:

    Love them!! My favorite dessert!!

  27. Cristina says:

    Using cake flour for the atayef must give it a much different texture than hotcakes. I know I would enjoy this, especially if it’s stuffed with either nuts or cream or cheese. Also like the idea of not using eggs.

  28. Rachana says:

    This is like Wow!!!! I love pancakes with clotted cream and cherry sauce and strawberry sauce. A delicious breakfast 🙂

  29. fimère says:

    j’en ai déjà fait et je trouve ça excellent
    bonne journée

  30. Joanne says:

    I suppose if they are pancake-LIKE then I can have them for breakfast…right? Those fillings look delicious, especially the cherry jam!

  31. Faith says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this! I think I’ve had these in the Middle East — they were very small pancakes stuffed with cream or nut filling and soaked in a sugar syrup. I’ve been dying to make them but haven’t found a good recipe…now that I have yours I’m going to be making these soon! 🙂

  32. sushma says:

    love the clicks they looks so beautiful and nice:and soft 🙂

  33. heni says:

    I love atayef but always had it with rose jam ;.. interesting it seems with cherry jam Joumana!

  34. Cathy at Wives with says:

    What a delicious combination of flavors. Cherries are a favorite and would be wonderful with a little cream and a pancake.

  35. Pamela says:

    Perfect pancakes without eggs! I wanted to tell you I made the “surquij” and loved it, I made some pita bread to go with it and it was a great success, thaks again.

    I also wanted to mention that down here in Chile, specially in the region were I live now, “cherimoyas” are very popular, I completely agree with you and Mark Twain, there are few fruit so delicious as this: we serve it with orange juice, a favorite dessert called “happy cherimoya” (chirimoya alegre), the orange juice enhances even more the sweetness of the cherimoya. Well, now I needd to find out how those seeds arrived here, we have a great Lebanese colony here, no wonder some of them brought the seeds or even the small trees as inmigrants used to do when travelling away from their home countries. Big hugs

  36. Barbara Bakes says:

    Sounds like a fabulous dessert, especially with those cherries!

  37. shayma says:

    these are so delicious- but tell me, arent you supposed to be relaxing in Beirut and being pampered? hope someone is cooking for you, too. x shayma

  38. FOODESSA says:

    OMG…I haven’t had breakfast yet…and your pancakes have just brought my hunger to another level.
    I just bought a jar of sour cherries last week (they were on special) and I figured I’m sure to use these for something. In comes Joumana with a solution ;o)
    Great recipe…I’ll try it this upcoming weekend.
    Flavourful wishes, Claudia

  39. June says:

    Oh, my mouth is “weeping” ..they look fabulous. I’m so enjoying “our” vacation in Lebanon and really look forward to reading your posts!

  40. Pj says:

    sounds like a wonderful dessert – yes, i never figured out how pancakes drizzled with strawberry syrup and butter could be a breakfast! i love the ashta and the cherry sauce. very tempting click too.

  41. Mary says:

    What a gorgeous dessert. I’m also appreciative of the fact that it is not hard to do. I hope you are having a great day. Blessings…Mary

  42. Amber @Almost Vegan says:

    That looks great, especially the cherry sauce. I love that they’re bite-sized.

  43. grace says:

    i can’t help but be a tad bit disgusted by the word ‘clotted’ but this is an undeniably tasty creation. 🙂

  44. Krista says:

    Oh, Joumana! I love this so much!! 🙂 Pancakes are so beautiful versatile, aren’t they? You’ve inspired me today to launch beyond the traditional. 🙂

  45. Barbara says:

    What fun, Joumana! Little crepes with a sweet filling….and you can just pick them up! Think I will add a touch of framboise to my cherries!

  46. sophia says:

    Wow, that looks so fluffy and pillowy! I would love to use this in a savory dish, even if it’s meant for dessert!

  47. Cooking with Kait says:

    Oh wow! These look amazing! I could eat them all day breakfast, lunch and dinner.

  48. Christine @ Fresh says:

    Oh these look simply divine! Fluffy thin moist pancakes. They probably would also go well with caviar.

  49. Ivy says:

    These simple desserts are the best. Love sour cherries and I think now is the time to get some and make some spoon sweet.

  50. citronetvanille says:

    Ah oui je les ai vus quelque part, mais je ne me souviens plus ou, ca ressemble un peu a un crumpet, non? j’adore les petits trous :o) hmm ta crème toute onctueuse avec les cerises me donne envie…en fait tout ce que tu fais me donne envie, un de mes défauts un est que je suis trop gourmande alors quand je viens te rendre visite, je repars toujours avec un petit creux.

  51. Oui, Chef says:

    These look divine, and would seem to be open to endless possibilities for stuffings or toppings. Love the creamy cheese and cherry combination…would you ever make them with savory toppings? – S

  52. Aysegul - nysdelight says:

    I love those little pancakes especially during Ramadan! These look incredible I must def try!

  53. Lea Ann says:

    Beautiful opening photo. I love these little pancakes. I’ve got to give them a try.

  54. ratiba says:

    Je te remercie pour tas visite sa ma permise de connaitre ton merveilleux blog
    merci pour le partage bisous

  55. Magdalena says:

    Very interesting pancakes 🙂 interesting that they are cooked on one side only. Thanks for another great idea!

  56. Wizzythestick says:

    These look fantastic. You temptress you for showing me that pic of clotted cream. Oh well at least you offered a lower fat alternative I suppose I could try it with the low fat ricotta.I tend to make ahead pancakes and freeze for busy mornings. Do these freeze well?

  57. Maria says:

    Delicious! Never seen pancakes like this before!

  58. Claudia says:

    I love that these are eggless – they someho seem lighter. (Of course then you add that scrumptious clotted cream and there’s heaven). he freshness of the berries is a thing of beauty.

  59. Claudia says:

    Cherries – I mean cherries- I have cherries and berries right next to me and am munching.

  60. peanutts says:

    yummm, that looks like a lovely desert.

  61. Julie says:

    J’avais déjà faim en arrivant sur ton blog, et là ça ne s’arrange pas! Le présentation est tellement jolie, j’aimerais beaucoup te piquer une petite part. La confiture de cerises a l’air extra!

  62. gula welat says:

    miam j’adore ca on en fait aussi
    la confiture (ma préférée les cerises griottes!) a l’air super bonne ca fait envie

  63. Sarah says:

    I love it!!! With pistachio’s are soooo good!

  64. Heba says:

    I just discovered your website and tried the Ashta recipe, it turned out excellent!! Thank you.

    I have 2 quick questions though,
    – want to make Atayif with Ashta (open ones) and noticed that you have 1 cup fine semolina, but its not included in the directions of how to make the pancakes. Im new to making Arabic sweets!
    I tired the pancake recipe yesterday and I added the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and powdered dry milk (nido); I also added the semolina then the yeast. and it turned out very thick!! I added water but I guess I didnt add enough?!
    -I noticed that you have different “pancake” ingredient in different recipes you have, does it very from the Atayif that are closed and if you fry them or not?!
    I hope I was clear!! =)

    • Joumana says:

      @Heba: I have had that problem adding flour from recipes I have tried in the past; since the amount of flour can vary based on how you measure it etc. if it is too thick, it is fine to add water to make it looser.
      The reason I have posted different recipes is simply to give options; I have tried all of them, and since they use different ingredients, (some have no egg or semolina), it can come in handy depending on what you have in your pantry that day. The ataief recipe that I fried is only with flour and so it taste bland when not fried. On the other hand, the recipe with egg is fine just baked.

  65. Heba says:

    Thanks a lot Joumana!! I appreciate the fast reply 🙂 IM going to give it a try again. Can’t wait to try your other recipes also. It’s nice to finally find a website that has traditional lebanes food that actually tastes great and has simple instructions (I love the step by step pictures also!!!)

  66. Len says:

    I feel theres too much of dry ingredients and little water, are the measurements right?

    • Joumana says:

      @Len I checked the measurements if 1 1/4 cup is not sufficient, feel free to add more or add an egg (I have made these with an egg and they come out great)/ the consistency of the batter should be similar to pancakes/ not too runny.

  67. Lara says:

    Hi joumana,
    I have been doing Atayef for a long time, but my recipe doesn’t call for milk, only water. What does milk add to the recipe? and can I use fresh milk instead of powder? You know, in the States, we don’t buy or use powdered milk.
    Thank you.

    • Joumana says:

      Hi Lara,
      True, the classic atayef is made with just water and yeast. I have made it using water, milk, milk and one egg, flour, flour and semolina or semolina (the way they do it in North Africa). My favorite way is to make it using one egg and milk, like an American pancake. It is only a matter of taste, really. If you prefer the plain ones, great! Oh, and of course, fresh milk is fine. In the Arabic groceries in the US, they do sell powdered milk for people who prefer it. Powdered milk comes in handy when you are baking and you are out of the fresh milk.

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