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Malabi Mousse Cheesecake

Malabi, a Middle Eastern dairy dessert, is the source of inspiration for this beautiful and exotically fragrant cheesecake. Orange blossom water (zahir in Arabic) is used to perfume both the mousse and the jelly topping. It is similar to rose water, but the bouquet is more delicate. Rose water can substitute.

Ingredients (for a 26 cm/10 inch diameter springform pan)
  • 1 26 cm/10 inch sponge base

  • The Malabi Mousse:

  • 14 g (1 sachet , 1/2 oz) gelatin

  • 80 ml (3 fl oz) water

  • 240 ml (81/2 oz, 1 cup) milk

  • 1/2 cup dried rosebuds (available at spice shops and Middle Eastern markets)

  • 5 drops orange blossom water

  • 3 egg whites

  • 50 g (2 oz, 1/4 cup) sugar

  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) mascarpone cheese

  • 500 ml (1/2 quart, 2 cups) whipping cream

  • 100 g confectioners' sugar

  • The Topping:

  • 300 ml (101/2 oz, 11/4 cups) water

  • 100 g (31/2 oz, 1/2 cup) sugar

  • 14 g (1 sachet , 1/2 oz) gelatin

  • 5 drops orange blossom water

  • 150 g (5 oz) frozen or fresh berries

  • Unsprayed rose petals (optional)


photo: Eilon Paz ("The Book of New Israeli Food")

Prepare the mousse: Pour the water in a bowl and sprinkle on the gelatin.


Bring the milk with dried rosebuds to a boil in a small saucepan. Turn off the heat, cover and let stand for 30 minutes. Strain the milk and return to the pan. Bring to a simmer and remove from the stove. Add the softened gelatin and the orange blossom water and cool to room temperature.


Beat egg whites in a mixer for 8 minutes, until they hold stiff peaks.


Beat the cheese with the confectioners' sugar and whipping cream until smooth and fluffy.


Add 2-3 tablespoons of the peaked egg whites to the milk and mix well. Add some more egg whites and mix. Fold the mixture into the remaining egg whites. Gently fold in the cheese mixture.


Place the sponge base in the bottom of the springform pan. Pour the mousse over the base and freeze for at least two hours.


Prepare the topping: Pour water in a bowl and sprinkle over the gelatin to soften.


Bring the water and sugar to a boil, remove from the stove and add the softened gelatin and the orange blossom water. Mix well to dissolve the gelatin. Arrange the berries over the frozen cake and pour on the gelatin mixture. Refrigerate until the jelly solidifies, release the cake from the pan, garnish with rose petals and serve. 

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