Qamar al-Din is a refreshing Middle Eastern apricot fruit leather drink flavoured with orange blossom water and served with pine nuts and pistachios. We relish this nourishing, viscous, tart, sweet and refreshing apricot juice for iftar during the holy month of Ramadan.
Like most Arabic dishe names, you will find this as Amardeen or Qamardeen or Qamar al-din or Kamardeen, Qamarulddin, etc.
As the apricot season starts and ends without any sign, they stock up the fruit in the form of jams, syrups and fruit leather. Qamar al-din is sold in packs of 400gms or 500gms during the month of Ramadan. You may have to try a few brands to find your favourite. I have shared this image just to give you an idea of how it looks.
What do I do with dried apricot paste?
When I picked a pack of dried apricot paste (Yanbu days) I had no idea what and how to use it. A quick google search resulted in "Amardeen"! It is so easy to prepare but needs a bit more time than your usual smoothies.
The fruit leather pieces needs to be soaked in warm water to soften it which makes it easy to prepare the apricot juice or any dish.
How to make the apricot drink using fruit leather?
There is no fixed recipe to make Qamar al-din. One pack of the sheet is 400 to 500 grams and a little can go a long way.
- Tear them up into smaller pieces and soak them in warm water for 4 to 6 hours or overnight. Make sure the fruit leather pieces are dissolved before using it.
- Blend the soaked apricot paste with some sweetened and strain the juice for a smooth texture. Add more cold water if it is too thick.
- Flavour with orange blossom water or rose water or both or skip them.
- Serve chilled with soaked and peeled pistachios and pine nuts.
- You can make a large batch and refrigerate and use it within three days.
Some recipe calls for warming up the apricot sheet with water on the stove stirring until dissolved which will require cooling time.
Now, you may ask how much water? that my friend depends on how thick or watered down you like to drink.
Traditionally this is a thick drink but you can always adjust as to your liking. I add anywhere between 3 to 4 cups in total for 400gms of the apricot sheet which is not too thin but quenches the thirst easily.
I am sharing a small batch recipe. As we are just two of us and in the middle of a pandemic (updated this post on 27th April 2021) it is better to make a smaller quantity and maybe use the remaining Qamar al-din for ice creams or this pudding!
Qamar al-Din Apricot Fruit leather Drink
- 100 grams apricot fruit leather Qamar al-din
- 2 cups water warmed (add more if required)
- 2 teaspoon sugar adjust as per taste (or any sweetener of choice)
- 1 teaspoon Orange blossom water or rose water (optional)
- 1 tablespoon pine nuts soaked (optional)
- 1 tablespoon pistachios soaked, peeled and chopped or use slivered pistachios (optional)
Soak the fruit leather
- Cut the apricot leather into smaller pieces using a knife or scissors. Soak them in warm water for 4 to 6 hours or overnight. Stir every few hours if possible.100 grams apricot fruit leather, 2 cups water
Blend the soaked apricot
- Transfer the soaked mixture into a blender with some sugar and blend for a minute or two until no large lumps are visible. You may strain the juice to discard any bits. Stir in orange blossom water or rose water. Refrigerate until serving time.2 teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon Orange blossom water
Serve Qamar al-Din
- You may add more cold water or ice cubes to dilute further as per your needs. Serve the apricot juice cold with ice cubes, pine nuts and chopped pistachios which are optional.1 tablespoon pine nuts, 1 tablespoon pistachios