Haleeb Mal Zafran ~ Emirati Saffron Milk



After the Qahwa and the Laban – which are relatively no-brainer recipes – I was planning for something else as this post for the Blogging Marathon #105 for the theme of “One country, one category, three dishes”. But fate had it that I wasn’t to make the elaborate drink that I planned. I fell ill last week and I still had to prepare for this post. The lack of energy and mood reigned in and I gave up on myself. When you feel ill, there are certain drinks that play such a soothing role on your overall wellness. If we are back home, it has to be this turmeric milk aka masala paal. But when it is here in the UAE, I would vouch for this saffron milk, called colloquially as “Haleeb Mal Zafran”.


Saffron is an expensive spice. It is definitely not something that we would use as frequently as we would love to. I know many who aren’t a fan of its flavor, but I totally love it. This spice is one that Emiratis use quite frequently into their cooking, especially their sweet dishes. The delicious Machboos gets a lovely dimension because of this little gold that goes into the last steaming process. I guess I don’t need to say more… 🙂





When winter approaches, B occasionally gets a serving of this “haleeb zafran” from the nearby cafeteria. I never knew it sold like hot cakes till he told it to me. To know what the fuss was about, I ordered one for myself on a cold evening, and man, I was hooked! Just like the Habbal Hamra, this saffron milk is so soothing and comforting that it literally wraps you with warmth on a cold day! Just that it is so much easier to make… Ever since, whenever I am in a mood to use my saffron generously, I make myself a cup and snuggle on the couch with a throw thinking about sweet nothings…


I had made this and clicked it long back. But the picture was so pathetic that I didn’t want it on the blog. The click just above was taken then and it was too good to push off, so I have posted it now. Last week, as the flu disturbed me, I craved for a warm mug and instantly I was reminded of this post pending. So the milk went into my pan, with a sprinkling of saffron and I waited for it to get done. I usually soak the saffron for sometime and get into the pan, so that it bleeds its beautiful shade effectively. But if you don’t have time, then rub it in between your fingers as you drop it into the milk. It may not give the color, but would still do the task. Use sweetener of your choice – I use stevia, but honey is something that add a beautiful dimension if added. Go on, make it for an unadulterated saffron flavor…




5 from 1 vote

Haleeb Mal Zafran ~ Emirati Saffron Milk

Course Drink
Cuisine Emirati
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 1
Author Rafeeda


  • 1 glass milk
  • A fat pinch saffron
  • Sweetener to taste


  • Microwave 2 tbsp of milk and crush the saffron into it. Allow it to soak.
  • Pour milk into a warming pot. Bring it to heat.
  • Add the saffron soaking milk into it and allow to boil. Simmer till the saffron bleeds well.
  • Add sweetner of choice and enjoy warm.


Check out the Blogging Marathon page to see what the other Blogging Marathoners are doing this BM#105.


Join the Conversation

  1. Hope you are feeling better now , and that milk looks awesome ! Perfect to cure your flu , and definitely such a exotic royal drink with that gold .

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Vaishali…

  2. Hope you are better now Rafeeda, that drink surely must have made things better. Glad you completed the week with some easy drinks!

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Valli…

  3. I love the idea of flavour milk with saffron!

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thanks a lot Angie…

  4. 5 stars
    Hope you are feeling better Rafeeda.
    Saffron milk sounds like a soothing and warming drink on a chilly winter day. Lovely clicks especially the one with milk boiling.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Pavani…

  5. Hope you are better now. Lovely clicks for such a soothing and comforting saffron milk.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Harini…

  6. Until you spend from your pocket you don’t know how expensive it can be 😀 I am guilty of using it up in our every day tea because I had a box and I hate to see it unused… And yes soaking in warm milk or water gets the best of it… even better if you crush it and then soak…

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Haha so true… 😀 Thank you so much Fami…

  7. Hope you are feeling better now Rafeeda. Saffron milk is a comforting drink. Pregnant women are made to drink this milk on a daily basis where I am from.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Amara…

  8. I hope you are doing well now. That milk with rich saffron sure sounds soothing and yummy

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Suma…

  9. Love the looks of it, I will definitely try it.

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