Basbousa Recipe – An Arabian Sweet Dessert

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Basbousa Recipe – An Arabian Sweet Dessert

Basbousa is a traditional and popular Middle Eastern dessert, originating from Egypt but now enjoyed worldwide. This dessert is often referred to as “Semolina Cake” because it is primarily made using semolina flour. What sets it apart from other desserts is its unique syrup, which makes it distinctively Middle Eastern. We all have a sweet tooth and enjoy various desserts, and Basbousa is a delightful addition to that list. You can easily make this delicious cake at home and enjoy a taste of Middle Eastern tradition.

Ingredients for Making Basbousa:

For Preparing the Sugar Syrup:

  • Sugar – 2 cups
  • Lemon juice – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Water – 1/2 cup
  • Rosewater – 1 teaspoon


For Making Basbousa:

  • Semolina – 1 cup
  • All-purpose flour – 1/2 cup
  • Baking powder – 2 teaspoons
  • Eggs – 3
  • Sugar – 1/2 cup
  • Butter – 1/2 cup
  • Shredded coconut – 1 cup
  • Plain yogurt – 1/2 cup
  • Vanilla essence – 1 teaspoon

Method for Preparing Basbousa:

Making the Sugar Syrup:

  • In a saucepan, combine the sugar and water.
  • Add the lemon juice to prevent crystallization.
  • Place it over medium heat and bring it to a boil.
  • Once it reaches a syrupy consistency, add the rosewater and remove it from the heat. Allow it to cool.


Making Basbousa:

  • Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F).
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the semolina, all-purpose flour, and baking powder.
  • In another bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together until they become fluffy and pale.
  • Melt the butter and allow it to cool slightly.
  • Add the melted butter, plain yogurt, vanilla essence, and shredded coconut to the egg-sugar mixture. Mix well.
  • Gradually add the semolina-flour mixture into the wet ingredients and combine until you have a smooth batter.
  • Grease a baking pan and pour the batter into it. Smooth the surface.
  • Use a knife to score the batter into diamond or square shapes.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 30-35 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
  • Once removed from the oven, immediately pour the cooled sugar syrup evenly over the hot Basbousa.
  • Let it soak for a few hours until the syrup is absorbed and the Basbousa cools down.

You can garnish your Basbousa with your choice of almonds or pistachios before serving. This traditional Middle Eastern dessert is known for its moist, syrupy texture and sweet, fragrant flavor. It’s a delightful treat for those with a sweet tooth and a wonderful way to enjoy a taste of the Middle East from the comfort of your home.

Basbousa is not only enjoyed in the Middle East but has also gained popularity in various regions, including Greece and Azerbaijan. Its unique combination of semolina and syrupy sweetness makes it a beloved dessert worldwide.

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