Basbousa is a sweet semolina cake having topping of rose water and lemon syrup. Let’s check out its ingredients and method of preparation.


  • 2½ cups coarse semolina
  • 90 g (1 cup) desiccated coconut
  • 220 g (1 cup) caster sugar
  • 75 g (½ cup) self-raising flour
  • 200 g thick yoghurt
  • 200 g unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 25-30 g blanched almonds


  • 330 g (1½ cups) sugar
  • 250 ml (1 cup) water
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp rose water


1. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Mix the semolina, coconut, sugar, flour, yoghurt, melted butter and vanilla in a bowl.

2. If the mixture seems too thick, add a little milk, but it should still be fairly stiff. Spread the mixture with your hands into a buttered 30 cm x 25 cm x 5 cm baking tray.

3. Cut it into diamond shapes, pressing hard. Place an almond in the centre of each diamond. Bake for 35–40 minutes or until golden brown.

4. Meanwhile, make the syrup. Place the sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves.

5. Simmer for 5 minutes without stirring. Stir in the lemon juice and rosewater and remove from the heat. Leave to cool. Pour the syrup over the cake while the cake is still hot. Cool to serve.