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Kanafeh, a yummy Palestinian treat, blends cheese with sweetness, not saltiness! Loved throughout the Arab world, it boasts a crispy outside and a creamy inside, all drenched in a sugary floral syrup!


Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Servings 6


**For the Ashta:**

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

**For the Filling:**

  • 8 ounces sweet cheese crumbled
  • 1 1/2 cup ashta

**For the Simple Syrup:**

  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon orange blossom water

**For the Shredded Phyllo:**

  • 12 oz shredded phyllo dough about 4-5 cups
  • 10 tablespoons melted unsalted butter or ghee
  • 1/4 teaspoon optional kanafa dye

**For Assembly:**

  • Ghee or butter for brushing pans
  • Optional chopped pistachios
  • Dried rose petals


**Making the Ashta:**

  • – Heat cream, milk, sugar, cornstarch, flour, and vanilla in a pot over medium heat.
  • – Whisk constantly until boiling, then simmer until thickened.
  • – Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge. Mix in crumbled sweet cheese when cool.

**Making the Simple Syrup:**

  • – Boil water, sugar, and orange blossom water in a pot, then simmer for 10 minutes until thickened. Cool to room temperature.

**Preparing the Phyllo:**

  • – Pulse phyllo dough in a food processor until shredded. Do not overdo it.
  • – Mix melted butter (with kanafa dye, if using) into shredded phyllo.
  • **Assembly and Cooking:**
  • – Brush kanafeh pans with ghee.
  • – Cover pans with shredded phyllo mix.
  • – Layer cheese and ashta mix over phyllo, then cover with more shredded phyllo.
  • – Cook on a preheated flame for 8 to 9 minutes on each side until golden.


  • – Drizzle with simple syrup, and garnish with pistachios and rose petals!


This recipe yields extra ashta. Adjust the quantity or make more filling for additional kanafeh.

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