First published July 2013, updated Jun 2017.
Zabadee el Mishmish is a delightful chilled Egyptian dessert of apricots, cottage cheese and yoghurt. I learnt to make this from a colleague in London who used to regale us with stories and recipes from home. And I have been lucky enough to have tasted this pudding in her mum’s home on the outskirts of Cairo.
Traditionally made with apricots, cottage cheese, yoghurt and honey, it is a delightful combination of sweet, creamy, tangy and just a hint of musk from the rose water that I like to add, which is completely optional.
In the summer, I love making Zabadee el Mishmish with fresh apricots, but when apricots are not in season, canned ones give the best results. In fact, I’d do so far as to say, the best result is with canned peaches in syrup. You can use a little of the syrup to top the chilled pudding before any other toppings. Dried apricots can also be used for this, but will need soaking overnight before being used.
This dessert has great potential as a low fat treat, as you can use low/no fat cottage cheese and yoghurt to the same effect.
Zabadee el Mishmish needs to chill for a minimum of 4 hours, so it’s definitely a make ahead dessert. The night before is perfect, but cover it with clingfilm if chilling for longer than 4 hours, to keep it from drying out.Print
Zabadee el Mishmish is a delightful chilled Egyptian pudding of apricots, cottage cheese and yoghurt.
- 150ml (3/5 cup) yoghurt
- 2 tsp gelatine
- 8 fresh peaches
- 1 large bowl of cold water
- 4 Tbsp honey
- 1 Tbsp caster sugar
- 150g (5 1/3oz) cottage cheese
- 1 tsp rose water
- crushed pistachios or almonds
- sliced apricots
- Place the yoghurt in a small saucepan and sprinkle the gelatine all over and leave to soak for about 10 minutes.
- Let’s attend to the apricots in the meantime. Bring a pan of water to boiling point and drop the apricots in. Blanch them for 20 seconds, then plunge them in the cold water.
- Peel the apricots, the skin should just come off easily.
- Halve the apricots, lose the stones and place them in a food chopper or blender.
- Add the cottage cheese and sugar and process the whole lot until fairly smooth. Transfer to a large bowl.
- Back to the yoghurt and gelatine mix. Heat it on low heat for about 2-3 minutes, stirring, until the gelatine is dissolved.
- Add the gelatine mix, honey and the rose water to the apricot mix and stir to combine thoroughly.
- Pour into little dessert dishes or wine glasses and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours. Can definitely be made the night before.
- Top with sliced apricots and crushed nuts just before serving. I personally like lots of nuts on it.
Total time doesn’t include chilling time.
- Category: Dessert
- Cuisine: Egyptian
- Serving Size: 4