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Layali Lubnan (Semolina Pudding)

Layali Lubnan

If you love an easy dessert that requires minimal prep time and no baking then this is for you! Layali Lubnan is a semolina pudding that translates to Lebanese nights. It is very popular in Lebanon hence the name but also throughout the Middle East. There are two main layers to Layali Lubnan. The first is the semolina pudding which is then topped with a layer of ashta (clotted cream). This dessert is then topped with an abundance of chopped pistachios for needed crunch and color. Lastly, once completely chilled and ready to be served; it is doused in simple syrup which is where the sweetness comes from in this dessert.

So, as you can see there are just a few steps and an easy one is quite easy making this a super convenient dessert especially during Ramadan. It can be made ahead of time which is super convenient and enjoyed for days to come as it stores in the fridge. Most of the ingredients for this semolina pudding can be found in an Arab pantry and if not/ in any Middle Eastern grocery store or local supermarkets.

What is distinctive about Layali Lubnan to me is the orange blossom water that permeates through the pudding. However, some people do not enjoy the flavor profile of orange blossom so I leave that optional. I, however, always add it as you can adjust the amount you would like! The dessert itself does not have much sugar at all which makes me a bit healthier than most as you regulate how much sweetness to add. The simple syrup is what truly makes this treat sweet and everyone’s preference for sweetness is different. The syrup keeps well in a jar in the fridge for future uses for a few months.

Other desserts similar to Layali Lubnan

Here are a few no bake cold desserts that are favorited on my blog: Nescake cake, Lotus cake, Lotus cheesecake, Rice Pudding

semolina pudding
Print Recipe
5 from 10 votes

Layali Lubnan (Semolina Milk Pudding)

Prep Time20 mins
Chill time2 hrs
Total Time2 hrs 20 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Arabic, lebanese
Keyword: Fufus Kitchen, layali lebnan, layali lubnan, lebanese nights desserts
Servings: 15 slices
Author: Heifa

Ingredients

Semolina Pudding Layer

  • 1 cup Fine Semolina
  • 5 cups Milk
  • 2 tbsp Sugar
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Mastic optional but recommended
  • 1 tsp Orange Blossom Water optional but recommedned.

Ashta Topping

  • 1/2 cup Milk
  • 1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 1 tbsp All-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp Corn Starch
  • 2 tbsp Sugar

Topping

  • 3/4 cup Crushed Pistachios

Simple Syrup

  • 2 cups Sugar
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 tsp Orange Blossom Water adjust to your preference

Instructions

  • Mix together all the ashta ingredients in a pot with a whisk without any heat at first until there are no lumps. Then, bring to medium-high heat and keep whisking until it starts to thicken which should take about 5 minutes. It should look creamy and pourable. If you like, add a drizzle of orange blossom water at this point and stir.
  • Remove ashta from pot and place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap to avoid the ashta developing a skin layer on top. Let it cool to the side while working on the semolina pudding.
  • Add all the semolina pudding ingredients but the orange blossom water in a pot and stir together on medium-high heat until it thickens to a nice consistency that is pourable which can take about 10 minutes or so. Add the orange blossom water last and stir.
  • Pour the semolina pudding into a 9 by 11 pan and spread it out evenly. Let it cool for 10 minutes. Then, layer the ashta on top and spread that out.
  • Top with the crushed pistachios all over the top. Add more if necessary.
  • Cover and let this cool in the fridge for 2 hours. Make the syrup in the meantime by mixing together the sugar and water. Let it come to a simmer for about 5-10 minutes until it slightly thickens. Add a hint of orange blossom water if you like and stir. Then drizzle all over the dessert as much as you like or drizzle to each person's slice. This is up to you.
  • This dessert needs a simple syrup as it is not sweetened at all without the syrup. So be sure to serve with it drizzled with syrup! Store extra syrup in a jar and keep in the fridge.

Notes

Keep stored in the fridge in an airtight container to enjoy for days!
layali lubnan
layali lubnan

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24 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This is by far the easiest recipe for an Arabic desert! I’m always scared to attempt making arabi desserts but I said let me try to make this bc I love Layali lubnan. It came out great!

  2. 5 stars
    I saw you making this on your insta story and I just had to make it! Your recipes are always perfect, literally never miss. It smells amaaaaaaazing! Can’t wait for it to cool and be ready

  3. 5 stars
    One of the best desserts I have tried. So light and so delicious! Thank you Heifa for sharing this absolutely gorgeous recipe! Will be making it a lot more for sure!!!!!!!! I highly highly highly recommend it!

  4. 5 stars
    I love this! It is very light and the best thing you can have when you are craving something cold! I am pregnant and have very bad morning sickness. To my surprise I was able to tolerate this sweet! Everyone in my family loved it! Thank you!

  5. 5 stars
    I grew up eating layali lebnan and is the only dessert I used to request my mom to make me all the time. This recipe was so easy to make and follow and tasted exactly like my moms growing up! Super delicious. Thank you Heifa!

  6. 5 stars
    Lovely recipe..I’m going to try it.. Can you help me with the equivalent metric measurment? Pleaseeeeeee🙏🏻

  7. 5 stars
    I have always been intimated to make traditional Arabic sweets but not this time. This recipe is so delicious, foolproof and goes a long way! Absolutely loved it and so did my friends and family.

  8. Absolutely a delicious recipe on repeat in my household!! I make it atleast every week and it’s gone before I know it!!

  9. 5 stars
    When you and your two sisters all show up to the potluck with the same exact dessert and it’s this one…winning. I’ve tried so many layali lubnan recipes and this is by FAR the best and most straightforward recipe I’ve used. Thanks Fufu!

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