In Heliopolis, Dokki, New Cairo and 6 October, Copermelt is offering clients who are willing to spend more than LE30 on a small pot of pudding a wide variety of tastes. Coppermelt is not exactly the place to go for grandma's rice pudding. Its brand is more fashionable: rice pudding with caramelised berries or even marron glacés topping. Mahalabiya, a sticky milky pudding with rosewater, could go a bit more traditional, with a topping of caramel or lightly caramelised pumpkins. Om Ali is offered with a well-liked chocolate spread and an extra caramel and nuts topping.
The puddings of Coppermelt are not too heavy in any variety. They are always fresh.
This is where one would go for a nice variety of traditional recipes and typical Egyptian cuisine puddings: rice pudding, Mahalabiya, Meshmeshiyah (an apricot based pudding) and of course Oum Ali. Here one is transported back to the Ramadan desserts of one's early childhood and appeals to those put off by the new varieties.
Exception, however, is not a destination for those who wish to go the extra mile, adding to a traditional Ramadan dessert, say, crème caramel.
The puddings come in simple and disposable bowls, nice for an informal gathering over iftar or sohour.
Branches of Exception are to be found in 6 October, Nasr City and Maadi.
Many non-traditional Ramadan desserts are available at Nola’s branches across Cairo and Giza. This year, however, Nola is offering the traditional rice pudding, with or without nuts, Oum Ali, Meshmeshiya and Layali Lebenan (a thick pudding of milk, cream, semolina and grounded pestachios).
Nola puddings always provide an original taste. And each pot is put in a box, which makes it easy to store in a fridge, one on top of the other, ahead of the dessert moment after iftar.
Going basic and heading to a local dairy store does not at all mean compromising on the quality of the dessert – certainly not if it is coming from the large and inviting fridge of Safy dairies.
Forgo the profiteroles, the mousse chocolat and most certainly the tiramisu. This is the place to indulge in intense original flavour rice pudding and Mahalabiya. Not trying Safy's baked rice pudding is truly an opportunity lost.
The plastic and foil deposable pots are not necessarily flattering for your iftar table, but Safy is willing to fit their delights into your own porcelain bowls if you visit a day in advance.
All across the eastern boroughs of the capital, Heliopolis, Nasr City, Obour and Tagammu, Sonesta dairies have simple but well-frequented milk bars that attract above average demand during Ramadan evenings, especially for their yogurt. Their rice pudding and Mahalabiya, scooped in simple plastic boxes, are also in high demand for sohour and iftar, especially towards the end of Ramadan.
This is one of the most affordable destinations for a nice homemade rice pudding and Mahalabiya that score high at this milky pudding destination par excellence.