[Sca-cooks] Halvah marzipan or nougat?

Heleen Greenwald heleen at ptd.net
Wed Oct 24 23:00:48 PDT 2007

What?? No recipe my lord???  Speaking for myself.... I would dearly  
love to make the eastern European version of halavah that I grew up  
with....basically sweetened sesame paste.  When I was little, a huge  
slab/mass would sit on the deli counter and you would ask the guy for  
a half or a quarter of a pound.....Ah! Those were the days!  Can it  
still be gotten in slab form?  The little packs of Joya halvah don't  
"My furs are not in storage, or draped across the bed,
they're hanging from the cage door, waiting to be fed."

On Oct 21, 2007, at 1:49 PM, Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius wrote:

> On Oct 21, 2007, at 1:23 PM, Suey wrote:
>> I have a conflict here. My Spanish sources say halvah is a
>> Hispano-Jewish type of nougat consisting of an almond-sugar paste  
>> with
>> **flavored with other ingredients such as rosewater, honey, julep,
>> clove, camphor or sesame. There are several variations using cashews,
>> pistachios and other nuts. David M. Gitlitz & Linda Kay Davidson  
>> in  A
>> Drizzle of Honey, The Lives and Recipes of Spain's Secret Jews  
>> clearly
>> indicate that they think it marzipan not nougat. What was halvah
>> before
>> the 15th Century marzipan or turron? What distinguishes the  
>> difference
>> between the two - baking? Yes, I know the Spanish versions clearly
>> have
>> a different taste but Gitlitz gives a Mexican recipe which sounds  
>> like
>> turron to me. Why am I getting bottled up on this?
>> Suey
> Halvah, hulwa, etc., are presumably Persian or Arabic in origin, and
> generally have in common a cooked sugar-syrup base (or sometimes a
> fruit syrup, such as date or pomegranite). They may or may not
> contain beaten egg white, which is probably where the confusion with
> nougat or torrone come in, and chopped nuts or other starchy staple,
> such as sesame seed, simple flour or semolina. Some contain milk or
> eggs. Today it's found all over the Islamic world, which is
> presumably how Spain got it.
> There are quite a few Islamic hulwah recipes in sources such as Kitab
> al Tabikh, which I seem to recall is somewhat older than the 15th
> century -- the recipes are sort of formulaic and modular, as I
> recall, with instructions on how to make sugar syrup, then a basic
> candy from that, with egg whites, then going on to add things like  
> nuts.
> Adamantius
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