This semolina halva with ice cream is a sweet treat that’s popular in Turkey. Halva is generally quick and easy to make. Typically, semolina halva is flavoured with sweet syrups or vanilla, this version ups the ante with an ice cream filling!
I can’t wait to share this Semolina Halva dessert with you today! It’s a simple dessert that’s ready in about a half hour and is easily customizable so you can craft the perfect dessert for your friends and family.
What is Semolina Halva
Semolina Halva is a delicious dessert that is quite popular in various Mediterranean, South Asian, and Middle Eastern countries. Commonly, it’s made using syrup or vanilla, but this fantastic Turkish Semolina Halva is made with luscious vanilla ice cream inside.
It is also common to find pine nuts or other nuts riddled in the cake part of the dessert, making it perfect for the nut lover who wants something a little sweet!
Semolina is a type of flour. It is made from durum wheat and the most nutritious part of that wheat is milled down and made into Semolina. It’s a course type of wheat.
Halva means sweet in Turkish. And semolina halva is irmik helvasi.
Semolina Halva with ice cream
Here’s a delicious Turkish dessert that we put a little spin on. It’s the perfect dessert combination of something warm served with a scoop of cold ice cream, the best of both worlds. Similar to how Americans love a nice hot slice of apple pie and a cold scoop of ice cream with it. Except, with this recipe, the ice cream is hidden inside of the Semolina Halva cake and then oozes out with every spoonful of this amazing dessert.
Since the cake-like part is inverted on top of ice cream, it reminds me of this Dulce de Leche lava cake recipe or one of those ‘Surprise Birthday Cakes’ that spill candies and chocolate whenever you cut into them. Trust me besties, you’re going to adore this ice cream filled dessert!
Other kinds of halva
Halva is usually made with flour, like Semolina, but it can also be made with tahini. When your halva is made with tahini, it is usually naturally sweet. Given that halva is popular in a few different parts of the world (South Asia and Greece also come to mind!), it’s understandable that there are many different types of halva out there. This semolina halva recipe happens to have Turkish origins, but it should by no means be considered “the definitive version”.
You can add virtually any of your favorite flavors to create different halva flavors. Try adding in some different nuts (pistachios are a popular option), chopped chocolate, butterscotch chips, white chocolate chips, coffee, or any flavors (think: lemon or orange zest) to the liquid mixture, before you mix it with the semolina to create new masterpieces.
- Pine nuts
- Ice cream
How to make semolina halva with ice cream
- In a large mixing bowl, mix sugar, water, and milk together until the sugar dissolves and mixes in well. Set the liquid mixture aside.
- In a rice pot, melt the butter on the stove. Add the pine nuts and semolina to the pot of melted butter and fry over low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Once the semolina turns a tan color while frying, add the liquid mixture to the pot. When the liquid mixture is poured into the hot pan, be careful as it will steam and splash.
- Mix carefully and place the lid on the pot.
- When the semolina starts to absorb the liquid, mix it again and close the lid.
- After about 2-3 minutes, once the semolina absorbs the liquid, put the halva in the bowl you will serve it in.
- Use a spoon to make a crater in the center of the halva and place a scoop of ice cream. Then add a spoonful of halva again and press it to straighten it.
- Invert the dessert onto a plate and serve with cinnamon on top.
- When making the crater to put the ice cream in, you can use a spoon or an ice cream scoop. Whichever you plan to use to get the ice cream out, that’s what’s best to use to make the crater. This way the ice cream scoop is the proper size for the crater.
- You want to let your ice cream soften a bit so it’s easier to scoop when you’re ready to serve your dessert.
While this Turkish Semolina Halva with ice cream is absolutely delish as it is, there are a few ways you can swap things out for a little extra variety:
- Trade ice cream- use any ice cream flavor your want. It would be really good with a nice scoop of chocolate, strawberry, or even Rocky Road ice cream. But use whatever your want to make your belly happy.
- You can trade out the pine nuts for other nut options. Try walnuts, pistachio, crushed pecans, almond slivers, or some chopped peanuts. You could even try sesame seeds.
- For another slightly sweeter option, try swapping the granulated white sugar for brown sugar.
- With the cinnamon, you can add a drizzle of honey, maple syrup, chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, or dulce de leche, etc
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More Turkish desserts
And that’s it for today, bestie. What did you think? Have you tried Turkish Semolina Halva with ice cream before? What are your favourite Mediterranean desserts? Comment below and let me know.Print