Khabeesa – Emirati Semolina Pudding


Today is the birthday #43 of the country that I grew up in my whole life. I am one among the 80’s generation who has seen the leaps and bounds in which this beautiful country has grown. At one time, the landmark to Dubai from Sharjah was the Al Mulla Plaza and there was only Trade Center on the way to Abu Dhabi. There were just small buildings, a small population – still more of expats than locals – and small growth. Life was simple then. After 2000, the growth has been phenomenal. The only time we remember seeing huge skyscrapers was in Abu Dhabi. But then the scenario spread all across the country. We have watched with awe the pace at which this country has grPinown. I guess I can keep going on and on, but then all I pray is that may Allah bless this nation and its leaders with the best and raise them to the best!!!


I am ashamed to say that despite blogging for almost 2 years now, I have not even shared a single Emirati recipe. I guess I should be hiding my head in shame!!! I would happily gorge on the lqeimats and the harees whenever there is a cultural function in Dubai or Sharjah, but have never attempted them at home. I have been procrastinating to say the least. In my cut-outs, I have some Emirati recipes but somehow, I don’t know why I never tried them. One day morning, over the weekend, I was hell bent at wanting to try something simple to start with for this National Day and got searching for recipes. It is sad that there are not many sites that share authentic recipes. This was one recipe I bookmarked to try and I made it for breakfast. Loved it with my cup of karak chai and going to make this frequently… This tastes so close to our rava kheer, but I loved all the intermittent bites of the coconut, nuts and the mild flavoring of saffron.Β Recipe adapted from here



I really hope that this is a start for me to share some recipes of a country which is my second home!!! Fingers crossed…



Khabeesa - Emirati Semolina Pudding

Course Dessert
Cuisine Emirati
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 3
Author Rafeeda


  • 1/4 cup semolina
  • 500 ml low fat milk
  • A pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
  • 2 tbsp grated coconut
  • 2 tbsp crushed cashew nuts
  • 4-6 strands of saffron
  • 1 tsp ghee


  • Dry roast the semolina in a saucepan on low flame till slightly browned. Ensure not to burn.
  • Add in the milk and whisk continuously till well combined and no lumps.
  • Add in all the remaining ingredients and cook till the mixture thickens, stirring occasionally.
  • Switch off and serve warm! You may garnish with toasted coconut, toasted cashewnuts or praline...


I added the ghee at the end once the cooking was done and stirred it in. You can add the ghee along with the ingredients as well. The original recipe had butter.

Join the Conversation

  1. A quick and delicious recipe from a lovely country!

    1. Thank you so much Sandhya…

  2. Looks so delicious….indeed its very simple and elegant…. πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you so much Remya… πŸ™‚

  3. I want that Turkish coffee pot and the pudding. Looks yummm.
    True not many sites with authentic recipes in English.

    1. Thank you so much Meena…

  4. Happy National Day. Khabeesa looks good… its so similar to the sooji ka halwa or sheero as we call it.

    1. Thank you so much Mayuri…

  5. khabeesa very interesting name rafee.nice to know the countries past too..

    1. Thank you so much Sathya…

  6. That looks very good!!!!

    1. Thank you so much Ree…

  7. Delicious pudding, looks so yummy and tempting!

    1. Thank you so much Sona…

  8. That loos like one interesting recipe… thanks for sharing πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you so much Gauri… πŸ™‚

  9. i love anythng with semolina..peru complicated aanelum recipe sounds easy:)

    1. Arabi peralle atha… hehe… thanks a lot Rani… πŸ™‚

  10. i am sure you really enjoyed the pudding dear

    1. Thank you so much Monu…

  11. Raf, made this for tonight dessert. I used sugar instead of honey as he prefers that. I added 3 tbsp and that wasnt sweet enough for him. πŸ™ but we liked it though. very similar to rava kesari isnt it?

    1. My sweets are normally less sugary dear, please increase to your consistency! The honey would give it a nice flavor, try with it next time. Good to know u liked it. Similar to our rava kesari but with all the additional bites! πŸ™‚ Thanks a lot Fami…

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