How to make a killer Lebanese Fruit Cocktail? Do it like the Lebanese with rich fruit sauces and topped with ashta, pistachio and a drizzle of honey.
It’s that wonderful time once again for an International Incident Party hosted by the wonderful Penny at Jeroxie. This month the theme is Sundaes! Oh How I love Thee Ice Cream! Yep I do eat ice cream 12 months out of the year…but Penny, who is down under, is laying in the hot summer sun right now while I am knee deep in snow! Maybe not the best time of the year for me. I guess it is time to play reverse psychology with myself and turn a negative into a positive….my Sundae will call out for Spring to arrive asap with this Lebanese Fruit Cocktail.
About 10 years ago I discovered a place in Montreal – in a lost industrial corner of the city – called Cocktail Antabli, a place that specializes in exotic fruit cocktails and waffles. It is owned by a Lebanese family. After my first experience there it became a mandatory yearly pilgrimage at the very least once a year. The fruit cocktails are ginormous and filling….they are more than a meal on their own. But so good, especially the big gooey white topping with pistachios drizzled in honey. And I always picked one with the amazing avocado purée.
Lebanese Fruit Cocktail Sundae
So for this challenge, I decided to recreate my favorite Lebanese Fruit Cocktail from this shop. Now a Sundae does require ice cream and there is none in the original version, so I decided to turn the avocado purée into avocado ice cream. My post may look daunting because there are several recipes…but they are all short and very quick. I highly recommend you make this treat. The secret is picking perfectly ripe and sweet fruits. Oh ad that gooey white stuff I found out is called Ashta. The trick when eating it is to go a bit under the ashta and only have a small portion of it with each spoonful so you still have ashta left with your last bites. I was very pleased to find a recipe for it on one of my favorite blogs owned by Joumana, Taste of Beirut. OK here we go with the making of:
mango, strawberry, banana…sliced or cut
avocado ice cream (see below)
mango purée (see below)
strawberry coulis (see below)
ashta (see below)
- In a very tall glass layer a bit of bananas and mangoes then cover with a bit of strawberry coulis.
- Next layer strawberries and cover with a bit of mango purée.
- Add a scoop of avocado ice cream.
- Repeat the 3 layers
- Top with a big scoop of ashta, crushes pistachio and a liberal drizzling of honey. Find a very long spoon!
Avocado Ice Cream Recipe
250ml heavy cream
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 ripe avocados
Peel and seed the avocados, put into a blender with the milk and make a purée. Pour the purée into a mixing bowl, add the sugar, lemon juice and cream and beat until creamy. Transfer the mixture into an ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
flesh of 1/2 a mango
2 tbsp water
1 tbsp sugar
Blend together to get a creamy purée. If too thick, adjust consistency with water.
1 cup of strawberries, chopped
2 tbsp water
1 tbsp sugar
Blend together to get a creamy coulis. If too thick, adjust consistency with water.
Ashta, makes about 1 cup
2 slices of American-style white bread
500ml of half-and-half or 1/2 milk and 1/2 heavy cream
2 tablespoons of cornstarch, diluted in a bit of water
1 Tablespoon of sugar
1 teaspoon of orange blossom water, 1 teaspoon of rose water
- Start by cutting the edges off the bread. Cut the soft white part in dices.
- Pour the half-and-half or milk and cream mixture (or whole milk) in a heavy-bottomed saucepan; add the diced bread and let it soak in the milk mixture for as long as possible, a day if you can.
- Heat the milk and bread mixture, add the sugar; dilute the cornstarch in water; stir the milk mixture continuously until it starts to steam; add the cornstarch and keep stirring until the mixture thickens, making sure it does not burn (adjust the heat).
- Add the flavored waters if using, stir a few seconds more and remove from the heat. Pour into a bowl, let it cool and then cover with plastic and store in the fridge overnight to give the cream a chance to thicken.
Check out more Lebanese recipes:
Perfect glass choice 🙂
Oh, that looks so inviting!! I just love your creativity…
That is one visually stunning cocktail! And, although I’m quite familiar with Lebanese food, I’ve never had ashta. Thanks for the tip!
Alright…I’m feeling a little left out of the Lebanese specialty loop. Although I pretty much know my way around this ethnic group of foods…it seems that I’m not familiar with Ashta. After having looked at the ingredients, I’m convinced that I’ve never had this pleasure ;o)
Evelyne, you did an incredible and shall I dare say…very dedicated montage. Now, who’s patient?
BTW…did you get to share this huge looking concoction…wink, wink!
Have a great day my sweet,
What a beautiful dessert! All the components sound amazing. I’ll definitely have to try this this summer!
Yummie, love them all specially the avocado ice cream…back in Brazil we used to eat avocado as fruit 🙂
what a gorgeous dessert:) love the how pretty it looks!
Colourful and healthy sundae!
This is gorgeous! I love the colorful layers, the avocado ice cream and mango puree is a terrific combination!
This looks amazing….beautiful color and so creative. I want to try some of that ice cream.
I love those fruit cocktails! As Joumana said Atabli is very popular here in Lebanon.
There is a place close to my house that makes great ones and that included the ice cream idea in the fruit cocktail. DELICIOUS! So I can tell that yours is an awesome reproduction! Looks great and I bet it tasted as great!
This is such a tantalizing dessert! I had no idea that Antabi had a shop in Canada~ it is well-known in Lebanon and has now several outlets in the city! I buy pomegranate juice from them and also ashta when I am too lazy to make it! I am salivating looking at these colors and creamy beauties. WOW.
I am originally from toronto but i am not sure if they have this antabli store there. If they do, i am surely checking it out on my next visit!
Your sundae looks gorgeous! The colors, the flavor combination, the fruits….all comgined in one neat, tasty package!
Absolutely stunning photos – love the first one with the dark background. Gosh, avocado ice cream too with all these beautiful flavours together. Sheer indulgence!
This sounds so refreshing…. it’s making me impatient for summer!!
Ev..this is a dream sundae, so unique, so colorful, but most importantly, it’s good for you *wink*. I mean, avocado, loads of fruit! I would have to eat like one a day! No problem! 🙂
Intrigued by the avocado ice cream certainly but it’s your beautiful presentation that brings it together. It just looks heavenly!
omg Evelyne I was introduced to this place when I was in Montreal, by my friend who lived there for many years, and I totally forgot about its magic until now! That place seriously rocks, and it’s so cool to see you recreate this! I love it!
What a great collection Evelyne. I especially love the avocado ice cream recipe. Looks wonderful.
Have a great week ahead.
Such fun colours – what an unusual dessert ! Loving the avocado ice cream 🙂
Very nicely tackled there… so vibrant and colourful! What a great looking sundae!
This looks stunning. Definitely going to have to try that avocado ice cream. Ashta sounds really interesting and somewhat weird with the addition of bread in it. Might have to try that too! Thanks for sharing, it’s just great getting new ideas from around the world.
Omg, I adore Lebanese food and this creation of yours is so elegant! And one could even say … its good for you? I am gonna say yes on that! So, so pretty.
This to me is THE ultimate sundae! I could sit and eat this all day, right after I’ve finished staring at it… The fruity flavors are awesome, and thanks for introducing us to ashta.
OMG… Love avocado ice cream……. all these fruits make this sundae more healthy 😉
Oh I love the idea of avocado ice cream 🙂 This whole dessert is so colourful – and I bet it tastes wonderful too – great contribution to the party!