Cream Filling for Kadaif

Kadaif is one of those desserts that’s easier to make than you’d think. It can be filled with cheese, nuts, or a creamy mixture.

After posting the nut kadaif recipe recently, I received a comment with this request from Ara, who asked:
 “Are you familiar with the version (of kadaif) that has clotted cream? I think it uses a mixture of crème fraiche thickened with starch and sweetened. If you know that variation, could you maybe post it? Thanks!”

My cream filling recipe is made with a blend of milk and heavy cream  which becomes the centerpiece of the kadaif.

 Aside from the cream filling itself, this recipe follows the same assembly and baking procedures as the cheese kadaif and nut-filled kadaif recipes.

Nut-filled kadaif


Cheese Kadaif


Cream filling for Kadaif

Cream Filling for Kadaif

¼ cup cornstarch
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 cup milk, divided
1 cup heavy cream


1. In a medium bowl, mix together sugar and cornstarch. Stir in 1/3 cup of the milk, stirring until well-combined.
2. In a saucepan, combine the remaining milk and heavy cream. Bring to a gentle boil over medium heat, keeping a watchful eye. 
3. Reduce heat; slowly pour in cornstarch mixture, stirring constantly until it begins to thicken. Simmer for one or two minutes; remove from heat and cool. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
4. Proceed with kadaif recipe, spreading the cream filling evenly over the bottom layer of buttered kadaif dough, then topping with remaining dough. Bake according to the kadaif recipe.
On the other hand, if you want khaimak (kaymak – or – clotted cream) which is served on top of zweibach, pastries or cooked fruit, here are two recipes from George Mardikian’s cookbook, “Dinner at Omar Khayyam’s”. The kaymak (khaimak) is not Mr. Mardikian’s own creation, but one he learned from the famous chef Tocatlian from Constantinople (Istanbul).

Kaymak (clotted cream) from Mardikian’s “Dinner at Omar Khayyam’s”
Note: This is served on top of sweetened bread, pastries, or cooked fruit.

  1 quart (4 cups) heavy whipping cream
      ·         In a saucepan, boil whipping cream over medium-low heat. 
      ·         Using a ladle, lift out cream and pour it back into the pot until bubbles start to rise. Continue this process for 30 minutes to one hour.
      ·         Remove pot from heat; place pot with cream in a warm place for 2 hours.
      ·         Pour cream into a rectangular pan. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours.
      ·         With a sharp knife, remove loose bubbles of cream that have risen and set. Roll up and remove from liquid. Slice and serve on top of ekmek khadayiff.

George Mardikian’s Ekmek Khadayiff
4 cups water
Juice of 2 lemons
1 pint (2 cups) honey
8 slices zweibach


      ·         Steam zweibach with water-lemon juice mixture. When zweibach has puffed out, place in a flat, round pan.
      ·         Pour honey over it and bake until golden brown (350°F) for about 45 minutes.
      ·         Serve with kaymak.

Final Note: If preparing the kaymak seems too overwhelming, use labne sweetened with a little powdered sugar in its place!

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  1. Ara December 16, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    Thanks, Robyn! Tokatlian's recipe proves, if nothing else, that you just can't do it like they did in the old days! "Continue this process for 30 minutes"??????? OMG!

  2. Robyn December 16, 2011 at 6:27 pm

    My pleasure, Ara.
    BTW, Tokatlian's recipe said to 'continue the process for 30 minutes to ONE HOUR' Now that's persistence!

  3. Ara December 17, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    My God. Do you think whipping it at slow speed will have the same effect? Faster?

  4. Robyn December 17, 2011 at 7:49 pm

    That's a good question. Are you willing to experiment?

  5. Robyn December 21, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Vanilla, of course! Thanks for your version and the link to your recipe, Pam. Your kadaif looks yummy! Robyn


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