Monday, 17 September 2012

Afghan Brides Fingers with Orange Blossom Syrup (Asabia el Aroos)

This month the Sweet Adventures Blog Hop is having a 'Sauces' themed hop. An interesting theme, as I never do many sweet sauces, so I was a bit stumped. I will be very keen to see what everybody else posts, as it is an area which I'm sure could encourage much creativity! In the end I managed to combine this blog hop with my other theme for September. September is Afghan Food Month, which has been delicious thus far! I also have to say that I have been receiving a very enthusiastic response from readers about featuring Afghan food, it seems to be a very popular choice! If you'd like to request a country to be featured then head on here and do so!

I very almost made a baklava, because I absolutely love baklava and I've actually never made a pistachio one. But instead I opted for the Afghan option which I've never made before - after all, these feature countries are meant to be all about learning and trying new things right? These light and tasty Brides Fingers are actually much easier than making baklava. They are also comparatively healthier, as they use less margarine and the end results are dipped in the syrup rather than completely soaked in it. I'm still a sucker for baklava (check out my Walnut Baklava here), but I think I will probably make the Brides Fingers more often!

Thanks to the super Kitchen Crusader for hosting this finger licking hop! Check out my entries into the other sweet adventures hops:

August's Berry Hop - Sugar Free and Vegan Raspberry Fudge
July's Nut Hop -  Best Ever Vegan Carrot Cake  (I got this one in just in time, but it never appeared on the link list so you may have missed it!)
June's Pie Hop - Easy, Sticky, Messy Banana Rum Pie
May's Tea Hop - Thai Red Tea Vegan Jelly with Poached Apples
April's Lemon Hop - Lemon Curd 'Cake Sandwiches'
March's Layers Hop - Rhubarb and Apple Sago Parfait
February's 'Love' Hop - African Almond, Pistachio and Orange Blossom Bites
January's Chocolate Hop - Black Forest Shots and Truffles in 3 Flavours: Smoky Paprika, Tahini & Strawberry Gum
December's Festive Hop - Chocolate Ice-Cream Christmas Pudding


The Bride's Fingers
80g pistachios
1/3 cup raw sugar
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
7 sheets thawed filo pastry
1/2 cup melted Nuttelex
Extra chopped pistachio, to garnish (optional)

Orange Blossom Syrup
1 1/2 cups raw sugar
3/4 cup water
1 tbsp orange blossom water
Juice of 1 lemon

To Make
1.To make the syrup, combine the sugar and water in a small pan and place over a medium heat. Boil until the sugar is dissolved and the syrup becomes slightly thicker, abotu 15-20 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the orange blossom water and lemon juice. Set aside to cool.
2. Combine the pistachios, sugar and cardamom in a food processor. Process until the nuts are well chopped. This is your filling.
3. Cut your filo pastry sheets once longitudinally and once horizontally, to make 4 long thin strips out of each sheet.
4. Lay 2 sheets of filo with the short end facing you on your work space. Grab a pastry brush and melted nuttelex and have them on hand. I like to brush just one line of nuttelex between the two sheets to hold them together, but it's not entirely necessary.
5. Place a tablespoon of the filling across the short side of pastry facing you.

6. Fold the edges of the pastry inward. I always let the edges touch in the middle, this allows for consistency of size and easy, neat rolling.

7. Brush the pastry with melted nuttelex and roll it up into a neat little log. You can use a little bit of extra melted nuttelex to help seal the edge. 

8. Place the logs with the edge facing downwards on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper. Continue until all the filling and pastry is use up. Should make 14 'fingers'.
9. Bake in an oven heated to 150 degrees C for about 15 minutes, or until the pastry is just golden brown. Keep an eye on them, as oven temperatures vary.
10. When you remove them from the oven, grab a pair of tongs and immediately dip the hot fingers into the cold syrup. Arrange on a plate. Drizzle 1-2 more tbsp of syrup over the top and sprinkle with chopped pistachios (optional). Serve at room temperature.

Makes 14. 

This month I'm featuring lots of amazing recipes from Afghanistan!
Check out my other Afghan recipe posts:


  1. Hi: these look delicious. What's Nuttelex (some kind of margarine)? Also, what is the Afghani name of this dish, in addition to the English translation (Bride's Fingers)?


    1. Nuttelex is a brand of vegan margarine, you can use any kind of dairy free margarine or butter.

      Good thought, I should have mentioned the Afghan name, it is Asabia el Aroos), I'll go back and add that into the post - thanks!

  2. Wow. Great recipe - I love pistachios. Thanks for the step by step photos. And how impressed am I that you've taken part in every single hop? So happy to have you on board every month.

  3. What a lovely recipe. I love the addition of cardamom to the fingers. I am off to read your pistachio biscuit recipe next. I adore pistachio!

  4. you have done it again mate! thank you for the wonderful recipes you keep bringing! much love from Melbourne, AUS.

  5. Hi, wonderful recipes here! I would love to print some of them out, is there a print button?
    Thank you..

  6. What if you don't have the orange blossom water?

    1. Hi, you could try simmering some strips of fresh orange peel (use a potato peeler to make nice big strips) in the syrup to give it the orange flavour.