Umm Ali: An Egyptian Desert, with American twist

Image via Asel_mk/Instagram

An exotic Egyptian pudding that is simple to bake and a guaranteed hit with the whole family, plus a great way to get some nuts and dried fruit into their diet.


  • 1 (500g) package frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 5 cups milk
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup chopped pistachio nuts
  • 1/4 cup flaked coconut


  • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C. Place the puff pastry sheets flat on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Leave the oven on.
  • Break the pastry into pieces, and place in a large bowl. Add the raisins, almonds, pine nuts, pistachios, and coconut, and mix everything around. Spread the mixture evenly in a glass baking dish (22cm x 33cm).
  • Pour the milk into a saucepan with the sugar and vanilla essence. Heat until not quite boiling. Pour over the mixture into the baking dish. Give it a little mix.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, then grill for another 2 minutes to brown the top. Let stand for 5 minutes. Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.