During Ramadan, the holy month of Islam, Saida’s sweet makers change their menu by adding a large number of sweets that are specific to that time of year. Passing by Al Hallab in Saida (a new branch as Al Hallab is from the north of Lebanon and Saida is in the south), I spotted a gentleman making ataif or Middle-Eastern pancakes. These get filled with ashta, Middle-Eastern clotted cream, or walnuts mixed with sugar and rose water. The ashta variety gets covered with sugar syrup and decorated with pistachios and candied orange blossoms and is absolutely delicious. It certainly is more decadent than the walnut version, but they’re both wonderful.
Here’s a video of the guy at Al Hallab making them in Saida. It’s a pretty cool video, so make sure you watch it.