Basbousa (Semolina cake) (Basbuusa) بـسـبـوسـة recipe – Egyptian Cuisine

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This Egyptian recipe for sweet semolina cake is incredibly easy to make. It's topped with a delicious rosewater and lemon syrup.

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
milk, if needed

330 g (1½ cups) sugar
250 ml (1 cup) water
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp rosewater
Cook's notes
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


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

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

21 thoughts on “Basbousa (Semolina cake) (Basbuusa) بـسـبـوسـة recipe – Egyptian Cuisine

    1. +Ayla Saeedi selfraising flour has baking powder in it. so it is not required in this recipe i suppose

  1. Can this recipe be frozen.  How would you recommend freezing?  Would you bake first and add syrup then freeze or would you freeze unbaked and cook later?  Or would either way work?

    1. +Genevieve Davitt I think it would lose its moistness, when finished it keeps quite well in the regular fridge (when covered, obviously)

    2. Genevieve Davitt you can freeze after baking and cooling. if you are serving at a later date, u can make the syrup n cool it, but warm the basbousa with a damp paper towel covered in microwave so it wl be warm and able to absorb the syrup before serving.hope this helps

  2. below recipe is cook time in the owen 35-40 min, u said 20 min, which is correct time?

  3. can anybody  please tell me how to make  the asaleya  (3asaleyya) with molasses I miss it since I left Egypt 53 years ago

  4. U don’t use measure so how meany butter? Otherwise made perfectly 👌

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