Khabees or Khabeesa is a traditional breakfast sweet dish made with toasted flour and served with a drizzle of ghee, chopped nuts and grated coconut. This is a popular choice of sweet served on Eid mornings across the Gulf countries and you should make it too.
This post was originally shared as part of the MENA Cooking Club. The club is no longer active.
Khabees is my in-law's favourite Eid breakfast sweet dish just like Balaleet. Their family tradition is to make a big batch and serve it with ghee, grated coconut and nuts. I got to have her famous Khabees for my first Eid with them and I thought it was more like a dessert-for-breakfast situation and akin to atta ki halwa.
Making Khabees is easy if you got the flour toasting done right because the main ingredient is flour, toasting it to perfection makes or breaks Khabees.
Let's take a look at what you will need to make Khabeesa.
- wheat flour: this is the best option for flavour.
- hot water
- sugar: you may use any sweetener of choice
- cardamom powder
- grated coconut: this is optional but recommended
- melted ghee
- nuts and raisins: you can use chopped almonds, pistachios, walnuts, etc.
How to make it?
- Toast the flour until browned and nutty
- Boil water with sugar and aromatics
- Cook the toasted flour in boiling water until smooth and thick
- Serve with garnish - melted ghee, nuts, dried fruits and grated coconut
TIP: You can always adjust the sweetenes and flavourings as per your taste.
Sounds similar to making upma? If you are familiar in making upma perfectly, then Khabees should be easy too.
Khabees is common in Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. You will find the recipe almost similar across the countries but do let me know if you make this any differently in your family.
Bahraini Khabees | Toasted Flour Sweet
- ½ cup whole wheat flour
- 1¼ cups water
- salt to taste
- 3 to 4 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoons cardamom powder
- 1 teaspoon rose water
- 2 tablespoons grated coconut
- 1 to 2 tablespoons ghee melted
- finely chopped nuts of choice pistachios, walnuts, almonds, etc.
- raisins for garnish
- grated coconut for garnish
- Use a heavy-bottomed shallow pan and toast the flour on low to medium flame stirring constantly until it is golden brown and gives off a nutty aroma. Transfer the flour to a bowl and keep aside.½ cup whole wheat flour
- Meanwhile, in a separate deep pot add water and sugar and bring this to a full boil. Stir in the salt, rose water and cardamom powder.1¼ cups water, salt to taste, 3 to 4 tablespoons sugar, ½ teaspoons cardamom powder, 1 teaspoon rose water
- Carefully add the roasted flour little by little while making sure to continuously stir the mixture with a wooden spatula. Make sure no lumps remain and all the water is absorbed. You may add more hot water if you find the mixture is dry. Continue to stir the mixture until it forms a smooth and thick porridge-like consistency.
- Stir in some of the ghee and mix until combined. Switch off.
- Divide the mixture into two to three serving plates. Drizzle the melted ghee and garnish with chopped nuts, raisins and grated coconut.2 tablespoons grated coconut, 1 to 2 tablespoons ghee, finely chopped nuts of choice, raisins, grated coconut
- Serve warm.