Last year, I made three Japanese inspired ice-cream flavours for the blog and this year, I’ve decided to do an Arabian theme and this flavour was going to be one of the three ice-creams I would be making for that particular series (and yes! rose-petal ice-cream will definitely be there). But, I was pretty hesitant about whether or not this should be part of the Arabian trio, particularly with Father’s Day in the mix. You see, this is my father’s ice-cream, or at least one that has been inspired by his stories of relatives bringing back fresh water buffalo milk from the marshlands (fresh enough to still be warm and to have been full of animal hair). And my dad’s favourite, and traditional, way to enjoy the milk was in the form of geymar (clotted cream made from the milk) with date nectar (or honey) and some freshly baked bread.
Apparently, it is a well-loved Iraqi breakfast stable, and according to a few sources, could very well date back to Ancient Sumeria (technically, there is no real proof of this, as many food historians believe that geymar originates from Turkey, where it is known as Kaymak, even though the words ‘Ga’ and ‘Mur’ mean ‘Milk’ and ‘Thickened’ in Ancient Sumerian respectively), but by all means, correct me if I am wrong here. Wherever it has originated from, it is still very much loved by a number of people in both Iraq and Turkey. And quite frankly, I do not blame them. Water buffalo milk, in my opinion, is far superior to cow’s milk in flavour, being far richer, creamier and slightly sweeter, and the clotted cream made from the former is just out-of-this-world good!
Of course, I know too well how difficult it is to get hold of that specific milk here in the UK and quite possibly in many other parts of the world. Therefore, if you cannot get hold of buffalo milk to make geymar, simply substitute with clotted cream. Or if you are feeling pretty experimental, simply substitute the buffalo milk for any other type of milk you have at hand.
So, Baba, this ice-cream is for you.
Happy Belated Father’s Day!
Geymar Clotted Cream
source: Nawal Cooking
Cooking time: 1 1/2 days
Geymar is runnier than regular clotted cream, and in this recipe you will have quite a bit of milk left underneath the clotted cream surface. It is traditional to pour some of that milk on top of the clotted cream when you serve it.
500ml water buffalo milk
500ml heavy cream
Pour the cream and milk into a saucepan and place on a low heat. Give the milk mixture a couple of stirs to ensure that the ingredients are evenly mixed; then, without stirring, allow the milk to come to a gentle simmer, and let it raise slightly (make sure that the milk does not come to a boil).
Allow to gently simmer for 40 minutes before removing from the heat and placing a colander upside down over the pot (so that it is dome shaped) and place in a warm, draft-free room. Cover the colander and pot tightly with a towel and leave overnight or until the pot is room temperature.
Remove the colander and place a lid over the saucepan. Place this in the refrigerator for 24 hours before using.
If you wish to eat the geymar, simply use a spatula and place the clotted cream into a bowl and drizzle with about 50ml of the remaining milk. Eat with warm bread and date nectar (or honey) and a sweet tea.
Cooking time: 2 1/2 hours
Makes: 3/4 cup
350g medjool dates, pit removed
400ml filtered water
Place the dates in a saucepan along with 400ml of boiling water. Ensure that the dates are covered with the water, then place the lid over the saucepan and allow to soften for 2 hours.
When ready, place the dates, 100g at a time, in a cheesecloth and squeeze as much liquid out as possible into the a new saucepan. Note: do not discard the dates’ pulp. Instead, use it to make a date caramel. Simply place the dates into a saucepan along with 200ml of water and allow to come to a boil, stirring continuously until the date caramel becomes thick and the dates have dissolved. Pour through a sieve and place in a sealable jar -this is delicious with yoghurt and sliced bananas.
Bring the syrup to a boil, reduce the heat and continue to simmer, stirring occasionally until thick enough to cover the back of a spoon (approximately 25-30 minutes). Remove from the heat.
Place in a sealable jar and allow to come to room temperature before placing in the refrigerator until needed (this will cause the nectar to become quite thick, but it will loosen to the consistency of honey when brought back to room temperature). To drizzle over the ice-cream, simply remove the desired amount of the syrup, place it in a small cup and allow to come to room temperature to use.
Use within 1 month.
Water Buffalo Milk Soft-Serve
adapted from: Lady and Pups
Cooking time: 25 minutes, plus overnight
Makes: 4 small servings or 2 large servings
The geymar in this recipe can be substituted with 250g clotted cream and 50ml milk, if desired.
For clarification, the photos of this post were taken on a really hot day over the weekend so the ice-cream almost immediately melted within minutes of serving in a bowl. If you want to make this ice-cream, make sure that bowls and all the equipment are cold before using.
300g buffalo milk
50ml condensed milk
100g granulated sugar (or vanilla sugar)
2 1/2tsp powdered gelatine
300g geymar (including some of the creamy milk underneath)
pinch of salt
Place all the ingredients into a saucepan and allow them to come to a boil for 1 minute, ensuring that the powdered gelatine has been fully dissolved and the milk mixture is of a smooth consistency.
Remove from the heat and place in a 20cm x 20cm cake tin or another shallow container. Place in the freezer for at least 4 hours before slicing into small cubes. Freeze overnight.
When ready to serve, Take a few slices of the ice-cream and place in a food processor to pulse until smooth. Place in a piping bag and pipe (or you can simply spoon) into an ice-cream bowl or small cup (Note: if it is really warm in your kitchen, you can simply pipe the soft-serve into a bowl and place back into the freezer for 5-10 minutes until thickened). Serve immediately with the date nectar drizzled over.
I’m going to go give my pink bird a bath #whitebudgieproblems since she’s looking like a murderous budgie at the moment with all the strawberry pulp and juice all over her face and chest. 🙂
Thank you for reading.