Basbousa (Semolina Cake)

Prep time: 15 min

Total time: 1 1/2 hours (approx.)

Makes 24 pieces


  • 2 cups fine semolina

  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1 cup plain yogurt

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) melted butter

  • 1 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 20-25 whole almonds, blanched and peeled

Atter Syrup:

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1 1/2 cup water

  • 1 tsp lemon juice

  • 1 tsp rose water


  1. Grease and line a 9x13" cake pan.

  2. Place all cake ingredients, except almonds and syrup ingredients, into a mixing bowl and blend with a hand blender for 3-4 minutes, until everything is well combined.

  3. Pour into the prepared pan and set aside to allow semonlina to hydrate for 15-20 minutes.

  4. Preheat the oven to 350F (180C).

  5. Place almonds on the batter and press gently. They should be placed such that each piece, when cut, will have an almond in the center.

  6. Place cake in the oven and bake 30-35 minutes till fully cooked and inserted skewer comes out clean. The top should be a nice golden color.

  7. While cake is in the oven, prepare the atter syrup.

  8. In a medium saucepan, add the sugar, water and lemon juice. Stir well and place on medium heat and bring to a boil. Allow syrup to boil for 8-10 minutes. Take off heat and stir in the rose water. Cover and set aside. Keep warm.

  9. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, cut into 2" squares. Pour warm syrup all over the cake and set aside to cool.

  10. Once cooled, transfer to serving platter. Serve at room temperature. Enjoy!

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