Luqaimat is a traditional Arabic sweet that is popular in many Middle Eastern countries, including Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia. These small, fried dough balls are typically made from flour, yeast, sugar, and water, and they are often flavored with cardamom or saffron.
Luqaimat is often served during special occasions and holidays, such as Ramadan and Eid, and it is a popular dessert in many households and restaurants throughout the Middle East. It is often served with a side of date syrup or honey for dipping, and some people enjoy sprinkling powdered sugar or cinnamon on top.
The traditional Qatari sweet has an imaginative twist in different cafes and restaurants around Doha.
What precisely are Luqaimat
the soft and airy texture of the dough ball, combined with the satisfying crunch of the exterior, is what makes luqaimat such a unique and enjoyable treat. And dipping it in the rich and flavorful date syrup, and sprinkling it with sesame seeds, takes the experience to a whole new level.
The combination of flour, yeast, cardamom, and saffron creates a smooth and fragrant batter that is the perfect base for the delicious luqaimat dumplings. And, as you mentioned, the dough balls are deep-fried until they achieve a beautiful golden-brown color, giving them that satisfying crunch on the outside.
While there is no sugar in the dumplings themselves, they are traditionally served with a sweet syrup made from honey or dates, which gives them their delightful sweetness. And, of course, enjoying a plate of luqaimat with a cup of hot Karak tea or Arabic coffee is the perfect way to cap off a meal or to enjoy as a special treat.
What’s also interesting about luqaimat is that they are a popular dessert not only in Qatar, but throughout the Arab world, with different regions having their own unique variations on the recipe. Whether you’re enjoying them in Qatar, Saudi Arabia, or the UAE, the pleasure of biting into a freshly fried luqaimat is truly universal.
How Luqaimat are made
Luqaimat are relatively easy to make, and with just a few basic ingredients, anyone can whip up a batch of these delicious treats at home.
To make the batter, you’ll need flour, yeast, cardamom, saffron, and water. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl, then gradually add water until the mixture forms a smooth batter. Let the batter rest for a few minutes to allow the yeast to activate and the flavors to meld together.
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- A couple of strands of saffron
- Sesame seeds (discretionary)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp active dry yeast
- 2 tbsp milk powder
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp cardamom powder
- A pinch of saffron
- Water, as needed
- Oil, for deep frying
- Date syrup, for serving
- Sesame seeds, for garnish
- In a bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, yeast, milk powder, sugar, cardamom powder, and saffron. Mix well.
- Gradually add water to the mixture while stirring gently with your hand to form a sticky batter. The batter should be thick and resemble medu vada batter.
- Cover the bowl with a muslin cloth and let it rest in a warm place for a couple of hours, or until it has doubled in size.
- Heat the oil in a deep-frying pan.
- To drop the batter into the oil, you can either use a spoon or a ziplock bag. If using a spoon, dip it in water in between to prevent sticking. If using a ziplock bag, cut out a corner and push out a small ball of batter into your hand. Drop the ball immediately into the oil.
- Fry the dumplings till they are dark golden brown in color, rolling them with a slotted spoon in oil for even cooking.
- Remove the dumplings from the oil and place them on a kitchen towel to remove any excess oil.
- Place the dumplings in a serving bowl, pour date syrup on top, and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
- Serve warm and enjoy the delicious taste of Luqaimat.
1. Sprinkle with or dip the Luqaimat in the prepared sugar syrup. Then again, you can use date syrup*, or even honey.
2. Organize the dumplings in a serving dish (optional: sprinkle with sesame seeds).