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Qatayef or Katayef (Arabic: قطايف‎, [qā'ṭā:īf] (About this soundlisten)) is an Arab dessert commonly served during the month of Ramadan, a sort of sweet dumpling filled with cream or nuts. It can be described as folded pancake.[1]

قطايف عصافيري2.jpg
Place of originLevant, Middle East
Region or stateEgypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Israel, Palestine, Saudi Arabia and Syria
Main ingredientsunsalted cheese, or a mixture of hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds, pistachios, raisins, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and cinnamon


The Arabic word Qatayef (Arabic: قطايف‎) is derived from the Arabic verb Arabic: qaṭaf‎, meaning to pick up.[2]


Qatayef is believed of Fatimid origin.[3] Some believe that Qatayef are the creation of the Fatimid Dynasty, however, their history dates back to the Abbasid Caliphate, 566-653 CE.[4][5] Qatayef was mentioned in a tenth century Arabic cookbook dates back to the Abbasid Caliphate by Ibn Sayyar al-Warraq called Kitab al-Ṭabīḫ (Arabic: كتاب الطبيخ‎, The Book of Dishes).[6] The book was later translated by Nawal Nasrallah, and named it (Annals of the Caliphs' Kitchens).[7] Qatayef was traditionally prepared by street vendors as well as households in the Levant and Egypt. It is usually prepared using Akkawi cheese as a filling.[8][9]


Qatayef is the general name of the dessert as a whole, but more specifically, the batter. It is usually made out of flour, baking powder, water, yeast, and sometimes sugar is added. The result of the batter being poured onto a round hot plate appears similar to pancakes, except only one side is cooked, then stuffed and folded. The pastry is filled with either unsalted sweet cheese a mixture of any of hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds, pistachios, raisins, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, roses extract (ma-zahr ماء الزهر) and cinnamon. It is then deep-fried or, less commonly, baked and served with a hot sweet syrup or sometimes honey. Another way of serving Qatayef is by filling it with whipped cream or Qishta (قشطة), fold it only half way and serve it with scented syrup without any frying or baking. This way of serving is called Assafiri Qatayef (قطايف عصافيري). [10][11]

See alsoEdit

  • Kanafeh, a different Arab dessert with a similar name
  • Mandugwa, a similar Korean dessert


  1. ^ "Qayatef (Katayef) Recipe; folded pancakes with nuts". Amira's Pantry. 2019-05-05. Retrieved 2019-06-11.
  2. ^ Team, Almaany. "Definition and meaning of Qatayef in Arabic - Arabic dictionary - Page 1".
  3. ^ The Ramadan Experience in Egypt
  4. ^ life, style. "The sweet history of Qatayef". Roya news. Retrieved 26 August 2018.
  5. ^ 1, 2. "In Gaza, Qatayef tradition thrives during Ramadan". GULF NEWS. Retrieved 26 August 2018.
  6. ^ al-Warrāq, Ibn Sayyār; Nasrallah, Nawal (Nov 26, 2007). Annals of the Caliphs' Kitchens: Ibn Sayyār Al-Warrāq's Tenth-century Baghdadi Cookbook. BRILL. p. 422. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  7. ^ al-Warrāq, Ibn Sayyār; Nasrallah, Nawal. "Annals of the Caliphs' Kitchens: Ibn Sayyār Al-Warrāq's Tenth-century Baghdadi Cookbook". books. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  8. ^ Sadat, Jehan (2002). A Woman of Egypt. Simon & Schuster. p. 48.
  9. ^ Abu-Zahra, Nadia (1999). The Pure and Powerful: Studies in Contemporary Muslim Society. Ithaca Press. ISBN 9780863722691.
  10. ^ "Qatayef with nuts قطايف بالمكسرات | Egyptian Cuisine and Recipes". Retrieved 2018-03-14.
  11. ^ Katayef (Ramadan pancakes) This Week in Palestine, Turbo Computers & Software Co. Ltd. 2007-07-09 Accessed on 2008-01-07.