Happy Family Day!

Family day was a result of Helen Hunley - the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta — passing the Family Day Act in 1990 in Alberta. British Columbia celebrated their family day on the second Monday of the month for a few years, until 2019 when it moved the celebration of Family day to the third Monday of the month like other provinces.

For Annab’s Bookstore Family day is a special day, because our bookstore is named after our family name: Annab. The name Annab is a type of fruit in Arabic. It has a maroon colour, crunchy, and it is shaped like the shape of a grape. The Annab tree was domesticated in South Asia in 9000 BC, but it also grows in Jordan and Palestine.

Our great-grandfather Hasan Annab was an orphan and he grew up in his paternal uncle’s home. He always hoped to have a big family of his own, and he was blessed with 11 children from different marriages. He only married when his wife passed away as he was a very loyal and loving husband.

One of our favorite Annab family recipe is Knafeh, which is also a dessert dish that Nablus is known for. It is sweetened with sugar syrup, but you can add as much as you like if you prefer to eat it with a less of a sweet flavour.

 

We hope you enjoy the recipe and say a little prayer of peace for our homeland Palestine.

Nabulsi Knafeh Recipe:

For the simple syrup:

  • 4 cups (1 kg) Redpath® Granulated Sugar
  • 2 cups (500 ml) water
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) lemon juice

For the Knafeh:

  • 1/2 kg shredded phyllo dough
  • 1 kg mozzarella cheese, grated
  • 1 1/2 cup (284 g) butter, melted
  • orange food colouring, powdered or liquid (optional)
  • 3/4 cup (100 g) crushed pistachios

For the simple syrup:

Mix the sugar, water, and lemon juice together in a pot. Place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool completely.

 For the Knafeh:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Make sure to thaw the shredded phyllo dough before using. Transfer it to a large bowl, then using your hands, begin pulling the strands apart, breaking them into smaller and smaller pieces until the dough is completely shredded.
  3. Pour the melted butter and food colouring (if using) over the shredded phyllo and mix in with your hands until butter and food colouring are evenly distributed. It is best to use a pair of latex gloves so your hands don't get colouring on them.
  4. Spread half the dough in a large round cake pan or a 9x13 baking dish. Press firmly into the pan.
  5. Spread the cheese over top of the dough, leaving at least an inch of space around the edges.
  6. Cover the cheese with the remaining dough, making sure to cover the edges first to seal the cheese and prevent it from leaking during baking. Press in firmly.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Once baked, remove from the oven and carefully flip over onto a serving tray or plate. Gently lift the baking pan away from the Knafeh.
  8. Spoon the cooled simple syrup over the Knafeh, then gently pour the remaining syrup over top. Adjust the amount of simple syrup you use to suit your tastes. Decorate with crushed pistachios and serve warm. Knafeh is best the day it’s made, but leftovers will keep well in the fridge for up to 3 days, just warm them up for 10 - 20 seconds in the microwave before serving.

 

 

Resources:

https://www.123dentist.com/how-did-family-day-get-its-start/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jujube

https://www.redpathsugar.com/recipe/knafeh-middle-eastern-sweet-cheese-pastry

https://www.vancouverisawesome.com/courier-archive/news/bc-changes-family-day-date-3067347

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