Welcome to Egyptian Cuisine Recipes

Welcome to the Egyptian recipes and cuisine site.

Please login or register to share your recipes.

Sahlab (salep, saloop, salop) سحلب


Sahlab is a popular winter drink in Egypt in cafes, as well as in homes.

The beverage is a thick creamy white hot drink.

The main ingredient is the Salep, which is a white flour like powder obtained from the dried tubers of a wild orchid, Orchis mascula.

The flour is used in other Turkish cooking, such as the thick dondurma icecream.

The main ingredient in the flour is mucilage, which gives sahlab its thick characteristic.

In Egypt, salep powder is kept and used for years. However, in Turkey, it is seasonal, and consumption of last year's crop after the new year's crop is out is frowned upon, much like the kastana (Marron glace).


  • Salep orchid at botanical.com.
  • 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica article on salep.
  • King's American dispensary on salep.
  • An Australian woman writes about salep, contains a recipe.
  • Salon.com article on salep dondurma ice cream.

Carob (Locust bean) drink Kharroob خروب


Carob is the legume fruit of the Carob tree, Ceratonia siliqua. It is also known as Locust bean, kharoob, and in Arabic ????.

The fruit is consumed in Egypt as a snack, and used to make a refreshing cold drink popular in shops and street vendors.


  • Columbia Encyclopedia on Carob.

  • Purdue Horticulture on new crops on Carob.



Molasses / عسل أسود - عسل سرياقوسي

Known in Egypt as 'black honey', molasses is extracted from sugar cane, which grows well in Egypt's hot summers.

Traditionally kept for relatively long periods in earthenware jars known as ballas بلاص, it does not need refrigiration.

Molasses is used to sweeten some dessert dishes and jam-like preserves.

It is also used as a snack dip and dessert, in combination with tahini and pita bread.

Halawa Tahinia / Halwa / Halva حلاوة طحينية

Halawa Tahinia is made from tahini (sesame seed paste), combined with sugar, and shaped into blocks.

Traditionally, halawa was made in two varieties, a hard brittle type, and a less common chewy dough like variety. Both were sold in tins. 

Nowadays, many additions and variations exist, such as halwa with pistachios, halwa with chocolate, halwa with hazelnuts, and more.

Halwa is eaten as a filling in sandwiches made from pita bread.

Because it is rich in calories and filling, and not expensive, it is a staple of the working class. It also need no fridge to keep for a long time.

Molasses with Tahini عسل أسود بالطحينة


This is a snack/dip as well as a dessert.

In Egypt, this is eaten as breakfast or an evening meal.

Of note:

  • As you mix the ingredients, watch the interesting marks the dark molasses makes in the light colored tahini. Fun for kids to watch.


Tahini طحينة

Tahini is made from sesame seeds, pressed into a paste. The closest resemblance to North  American food would be peanut butter.

Tahini is used in Egyptian and other Middle Eastern dishes.

It is a major ingredient in many dips, such as Baba Ghanoug, as well as sweets like Halva/Halawa. 

Resources and links on Egyptian cuisine recipe ingredients

We would like to point out a set of pages that have a lot of info on ingredients of Egyptian cuisine.

Here are the ingredients page, and make sure you check the table of contents as well.


Thank you for visiting our site.

Many years ago, I started the Egyptian Cuisine, Food and Recipes section on the Baheyeldin Dynasty web site.

This was intended to be an introduction to Egyptian cooking, that would eventually have recipes in it. Years passed by, and people kept asking for recipes.

So, instead of having it all on a personal web site, it was decided that it would best in a dedicated site, and Egyptian-Cuisine-Recipes.com was born!

Gum Mastic / Mesteka مستكة

Known in Egypt as Mesteka, the Mastic resin is used in many Egyptian dishes, ranging from soups to meat and desserts.

The Greeks seem to think that this ingredient is unique to them, but it is not. In Turkey, Syria and Lebanon, the dondurma ice cream is made with Mastic.

The resin has a unique flavor and can be chewed like gum, where the translucent hard droplets turn into opaque white.