Arabic Sweets: Borma

This article attempts to describe one of the most desired types of Arabic sweets, namely the “Borma”. A differentiation is also made between the Lebanese and the Syrian versions of it.

Among all types of Arabic sweets and all varieties of assorted Baklava, the “Borma” is considered one of the richest and most desired types, as well as one of the most expensive as it is richly filled with nuts, being pistachios, pine nuts, or cashews. The pistachios filled version if more popular in general, but many people do like that one with a combination of pine nuts and cashews.

Borma, which is also written “Burma”, consists of thin strings of dough wrapped around a variety of nuts. It is usually filled with either pistachios or with a mixture of pine nuts and cashews. The dough is made from flour and water and it is called Knafeh dough. At first, it is very flexible which allows it to be rolled in long cylinders as is the case in this dessert, and after it is baked it hardens and it takes its final form.

It is one of the sweetest types of Middle Eastern sweets as it is fully submerged in sugar syrup for a long time during preparation. The amount of sugar that stays in it depends on how long it is left to drain afterwards.

The Lebanese and the Syrian versions of Borma differ slightly in shape and taste. The Lebanese type tends to be smaller in diameter but thicker and sweeter. The syrian version is called “Mabrouma” instead. Both are derived from the same Arabic word that means “round”. Even though the Syrian version Mabrouma is exclusively filled with pistachios, the Lebanese version is filled with either pistachios or a mixture of pine nuts and cashews.

It is one of the many types of Arabic sweets that are usually classified under the type of “assorted Baklava”, which comprises original Baklava, Basma, Bassima, Ballorieh, Kol Weshkor (Roses), Asabi (Fingers), Bokaj, Iswara (Rings), and Is El Bolbol (Bird’s Nest), and Hadef, which are all made of nuts filled dough. All these types of pastries are made from very similar ingredients, but each one is unique in its own way. Borma for example has a unique brown color and rounded shape which makes its pieces stand out in any baklava assortment.

Arabic sweets are also known as Middle Eastern sweets, Mediterranean sweets, and Lebanese sweets.