ِAndalusian semolina egg bread (إسْفَنْج, isfanj)

This is a recreation of a 13th-century recipe made with semolina flour, yeast and eggs. Braided and served with a sprinkling of sesame seeds, it bears more than a passing resemblance to challa bread! It derives its name from the sponge-like (isfanj) texture. The isfanj dough can also be used to make fritters stuffed with various kinds of nuts. It is in the latter guise that the dish has survived in present-day North Africa (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya) as a type of doughnut, which, depending on the country, is known as sfenj (سفنج), sfinz (سفنز), bambalouni (بمبلوني), ftayer (فطاير), or khfaf (خفاف). [Andalusian, fol. 26r.]

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