The Definitive Guide to Living in the Capital , Cairo , Egypt

The Cairo Guide to the Best Oriental Sweets in Ramadan

The Cairo Guide to the Best Oriental Sweets in Ramadan
written by
Soraya Morayef

No matter where or how you eat your fetar during
Ramadan, there’s a 99.9% chance that you’ll end up having oriental sweets for
dessert. And any family occasion or a friend’s sohour party must
be accompanied by a box of oriental delicacies. This is an inherent and very
delicious tradition in Ramadan; one that we certainly don’t object to with
Cairo’s plethora of quality pastry shops making the freshest and most
delectable sweets out there.

Here’s Cairo 360’s pick of the best oriental sweets
that will highlight your fetar meal and impress your friends.

Mandarine
Koueidar:
A favourite among many of us, this sweet shop
consistently delivers fresh, sweet and delicious oriental sweets: we love their
Turkish delight (malban bel eshta), eish saraya, wrapped golash and konafa with
cream. A kilo of mixed oriental sweets can cost around 60LE depending on your
selection, while a kilo of konafa with cream costs 38LE. Turkish delight and
eish saraya both cost 43LE per kilo, and the eish saraya is purchased in a
plate portion of more than a kilo, so half-kilo portions are not possible.
Mandarine Koueidar has branches in Maadi, Zamalek and Korba. The Maadi branch
delivers to the surrounding areas, and the shop stays open until 1AM.

Abdel
Rahim Koueidar:
Often confused with the shop above, this chain of
pastry shops also offers delicious oriental sweets as well as ice cream.
Although it’s impossible to declare just one shop to have the best konafa in
Cairo, we vote Koueidar’s konafa as our favourite this
Ramadan: perfectly baked so that the konafa exterior is crunchy, the pastry
melts in your mouth once you bite through to the cream filling and rich syrup
dressing. A kilo of konafa with cream costs 35LE, while a kilo of konafa with
pistachio costs 92LE. A kilo of mixed oriental sweets will set you back around
50LE. Delivery is available and you can order in advance if you want to pick it
up from the Downtown shop.

Le
Carnaval
: This upmarket Dokki delicacy shop has some of the
most elaborate and delicious cakes that we’ve tasted in Cairo. If you can pull
yourself away from their display of ice creams and mousse cakes, we recommend
the heavenly rich konafa with mango, which comes in a gold-tainted plastic bowl
and costs a whopping 240LE. For a cheaper alternative, try their mini portions
of konafa with mango for 130LE per kilo (30 pieces). Delivery is not available, and they
recommend you pick up your dessert before fetar. The shop closes at the Maghreb
call for prayer and opens an hour later.

La Poire:
The popular pastry chain has branches all over
Cairo, Alexandria, the North Coast and other cities. Aside from its excellent
range of mini-sandwiches and tarts, La Poire goes all out with its oriental
sweets for Ramadan. We recommend the konafa bites wrapped in pistachio, the
baa’lawa, the golash and the remoush el sitt (lady’s eyelashes), which melt in
your mouth and aren’t too heavy on the sugar. A kilo of mixed oriental sweets
costs 100LE, while a whole plate of konafa with cream costs 55LE and a plate of
konafa with nuts costs 72LE. Delivery is offered everywhere for orders of one
kilo and above, and the shop closes before midnight.

Twinky: With two branches
in Haram and one in Mohandiseen, Twinky makes suprisingly light and fresh sweets. A kilo of mixed oriental sweets will set you back
between 60LE and 70LE, and includes light, melt-in-your-mouth remoush el sitt,
appropriately sweet and creamy konafa, soft and chewy basbousa and crunchy
konafa wrapped in nuts, which is even tastier than La Poire’s version. Delivery
is available from the Mohandiseen branch and one of the Haram branches.

L’Amondine: With
branches in Maadi, Dokki and Nasr City, L’Amondine serves delectable and
noticeably fresh konafa with mangoes and cream. The konafa comes with a side of
syrup that you can add according to your preference: on its own, the konafa is
already pretty sweet and makes a delightful, chewy dessert with its mixture of
the cream’s smoothness and the mango’s sharp sweetness. L’Amondine also serves
nice atayef with nuts that aren’t too sweet or soggy. Just like most pastry
shops in Ramadan, be warned that you may have to queue for a while for your
order.

Salé
Sucré
: If you haven’t tried Salé Sucré’s osmanleya, then
you’re missing out. This heavenly but heavy dessert comes with several fruit
toppings, including figs, dates and mangoes, and a cream filling over a crunchy
crushed konafa base. The treat costs 48LE per kilo, and the cake version
costs 120LE. The shop has branches in Nasr City, Heliopolis, Maadi and Mohandiseen
and stays open until midnight. Delivery is available but they recommend that
you order in advance.

Alternative
Options:
If you’re
fed up with the standard oriental desserts, we recommend the following
alternatives to refresh your dessert taste buds: konafa with mango cupcakes
from Nola, assaleya cupcakes from Crumbs, mahalabeya from El Malky, rice
pudding with ice cream from Saber and tangerine ice cream from Mandarine
Koueidar
.

Happy Eating!

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