Gishta baladi

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Gishta baladi

Post by Who2 » Wed Nov 20, 2019 8:36 am

Yesterday village Omda Sabar popped in for a beer..
As I have a large kilner jar of sourdough starter fermenting in the sun, he asked what it was..

He started talking about 'sounds-like Gishta Baladi...
I gave up, he was talking about I thought, buffalo yogurt.
Off he popped, returning with a huge bowl of what looked like white custard with a thick skin on top.

I spoonful of the skin and beneath a sort of lumpy yogurt.
But everybody who sampled the skin where 'blown away, it tasted like fresh cream.
The yogurt was tasty as well...

Any how, I'm going to try it making another sourdough starter, and try to find out how they made it..
Aida doesn't think much of my bread so-far... 8)


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Re: Gishta baladi

Post by HEPZIBAH » Wed Nov 20, 2019 3:52 pm

Could he have said 'Gishta Almarai'?
Almarai is a brand name, and they do a pot of Fresh Cream.
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Re: Gishta baladi

Post by Who2 » Wed Nov 20, 2019 3:54 pm

Bit of an update: The skin is called 'samna baladi...I'll ask Aida tomorrow if she can make it ?
And try to watch her make it.... 8)
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Re: Gishta baladi

Post by HEPZIBAH » Wed Nov 20, 2019 4:07 pm

Actually, my first thought when I read the opening post was kefir., although I don't know if any of that can have the texture/ taste quality of fresh cream.

I know there is a fermented milk type drink that is produced in Luxor but I've only had a small sip of it. It was years ago, and it was being sold from the back of a bicycle into used water bottles. My friends were over the moon to be able to buy it because apparently, even then, it was becoming something that many people didn't really like/or fewer people were producing it.
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Re: Gishta baladi

Post by HEPZIBAH » Wed Nov 20, 2019 4:50 pm

Here you go... I think this is it:
Samn baladi

Samn Baladi, also known as Al-Samn Al-Fallahi or Al-Samn Al-Saidi, is a clarified butter commonly used also in Middle Eastern and North African cuisines in general. When prepared with cow’s milk, Samn has a golden yellow colour, owing to the high content of β-carotene, while in case of buffalo’s milk, it has a white, slightly greenish colour. It is characterized by a pleasant flavour that arises from various compounds, which are formed during the fermentation and heating.


The main object of the primitive dairy industry in the rural districts of Egypt is to separate milk fats for making butter, and to process the remainder into products to be consumed as such or after storage throughout the year. In Lower Egypt, farmers put fresh milk in shallow or deep earthenware pots (matrad or shalia) and leave it to stand in a warm and dark place till the cream rises and the rest of milk coagulates. The cream layer is removed and beaten into butter, which is boiled and therefore converted into samn. The presence of earthenware pots and barany (pot with glazed inner surface for storage of samn in the tomb of king Horaha of the first dynasty – 3,200 B.C.) indicates that the art of samn making was known to the ancient Egyptians.


Samn is traditionally prepared by direct heating of salted sour butter until most of the water evaporates. Care must be taken during this stage to avoid frothing by continuous stirring and slow heating rate. When foams recess, the rate of heating is increased with continuous stirring until the aggregated milk solids-not-fat acquire a creamy colour and temperature reaches 118-120°C. Heating is then discontinued and samn is left to cool at room temperature to allow setting of the aggregated morta and the clear fat is separated by decantation. The slow cooling of samn allows for the formation of fat crystals that characterize samn. The latter should have a sweet flavour and be free from rancidity.




The traditional products, local breeds, and know-how collected by the Ark of Taste belong to the communities that have preserved them over time. They have been shared and described here thanks to the efforts of the network that that Slow Food has developed around the world, with the objective of preserving them and raising awareness. The text from these descriptions may be used, without modifications and citing the source, for non-commercial purposes in line with the Slow Food philosophy.

https://www.fondazioneslowfood.com/en/a ... mn-baladi/

There are also some 'How to Make' videos online if you search further.
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Re: Gishta baladi

Post by BENNU » Wed Nov 20, 2019 8:27 pm

HEPZIBAH wrote:
Wed Nov 20, 2019 4:50 pm


Samn Baladi, also known as Al-Samn Al-Fallahi or Al-Samn Al-Saidi, is a clarified butter commonly used also in Middle Eastern and North African cuisines in general. When prepared with cow’s milk, Samn has a golden yellow colour, owing to the high content of β-carotene, while in case of buffalo’s milk, it has a white, slightly greenish colour. It is characterized by a pleasant flavour that arises from various compounds, which are formed during the fermentation and heating.
That sounds like Ghee, or what Egyptians call Cow Oil.

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Re: Gishta baladi

Post by HEPZIBAH » Wed Nov 20, 2019 8:45 pm

Yes Bennu, it does also come up as Ghee/gee.

(I've also got the words Curds & Whey buzzing round in my my head but will need to check the technical details of that.)
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