Funeral Helva

İrmik helvası


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Classic Turkish Cooking

By Ghillie Basan

Published 1995

  • About

Made with semolina, this helva is carried to the graveside and offered to the mourners. It is also popular on happier occasions.


  • 1 lb/450 g semolina
  • 8 oz/225 g butter
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • pints/900 ml milk
  • 8 oz/225 g sugar
  • 1-2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (optional)


  • Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in the pine nuts and semolina, and cook until lightly browned. Reduce the heat and add the milk. Mix well, cover the pan with a dry cloth, press the lid down tightly, instantly pull the towel flaps up over the lid and simmer until the milk is absorbed. Then stir in the sugar until it has dissolved. Cover again with cloth and lid, remove from the heat and leave to stand for 1 hour. Mix well with a spoon, serve, and sprinkle with cinnamon.