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Mesamen or Musamen (Arabic: ميسامين) also called Malawi, Malawah or Murtabak is a rich traditional Arabian pancake like bread. It is famous is the North-African and Middle-Eastern regions. These pancake like breads are usually an accompaniment to a cup of aromatic morning mint tea or coffee. Msemen can be stuffed with vegetables or meat fillings. A stuffed variant from Yemen is called the Murtabak and is very famous in the Middle-East and Asia.

Origin name[edit]

The original name is derived from the Arabic word samen or smen, meaning "clarified butter". The word me-samen or mu-samen means "with clarified butter", because it is a substantial ingredient to prepare the bread.

Is is also called Malawi in North-Africa and malawah in the Middle-East.

Origin dish[edit]

It is an Arabian dish which is prepared in many different North-African and Middle-Eastern countries. It probably has its roots in Yemen and travelled to other regions in the Middle-East and North-Africa during the Islamic mid-centuries. In many North-African and Southern Middle-Eastern countries it has become a staple food.[citation needed]


The recipe uses the following ingredients: flour, semolina, dry yeast, melted butter, salt, sugar and a bit of water. These are mixed well together into a smooth dough mixture. The dough is cut into several balls, which are then rolled out and folded into square pancakes.



See also[edit]


  1. ^ Samuel Clark, Samantha Clark. The Moro Cookbook. Ebury Press, 2003. ISBN 009188084X. 
  2. ^ Alain Jaouhari. Marruecos: La cocina de mi madre. Intermón Oxfam Editorial, 2005. ISBN 8484523535.