Valentine's Day Dessert Recipe: Strawberry Mahalabia By Chef Malay Rana
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Mahalabia, also named Muhallebi, is a creamy dessert (pudding) made with sugar, rice flour, mixed with milk, semolina or starch from the Middle East. Traditionally, it is garnished with nuts and rose petals on the top. However, many chefs use different toppings to create their versions. While the dessert is called Mahalabia in Egypt, the Turkey and Iraqi variant is called Muhallebi, the Syrian and Lebanese variant is named Mahalayeh, and the Israeli variant is anointed Malabi.

History Of Mahalabia

  • 2 tbsp coarsely chopped pistachios
  • Fresh strawberry and strawberry syrup
  • Dried rose petals (optional)
  • Mint leaves


  1. Combine ½ cup cold milk and rice flour and whisk till smooth
  2. In a medium saucepan, add the remaining milk and cream and start to boil along with the strawberry essence
  3. When the milk is boiling, keep gas to medium heat and slowly add the flour mixture
  4. Once the rice flour mixture is simmering, add a sugar whisk constantly until the mixture thickens
  5. Turn the flame to low while whisking until the mixture reaches a pudding consistency. Add cornflour to further thicken for setting in the mould
  6. Once the pudding thickens, remove the pot from the heat and pour it into small dessert bowls
  7. Refrigerate the bowls for a couple of hours until the pudding is set well
  8. Before serving, garnish the Mahalabia with crushed pistachios, sliced fresh strawberry, mint leaves and strawberry syrup