Saturday, June 8, 2013

Egyptian Basbousa

When I got my funky Mediterranean glasses for mint tea, I was looking for the perfect treat that would go with them for that great picture. I came across several Egyptian Basbousa recipes and pictures. This is a semolina and yoghurt cake soaked in rose water syrup and it looked very appealing. This was something I have never attempted before so I was excited ! In this recipe , I decreased the amount of sugar considerably compared to other recipes I found and it was just sweet enough. Let me tell you IT IS A MUST TRY !!!! It is a fabulous moist cake with that delicate and exotic rose water flavor. I fell in love. It is a treat I will make more often for sure.


2 Cups of Semolina
1/4 cup of sugar
1/2 Cup (1 stick) of Butter at room temperature
2 eggs
3/4 cup of low fat yoghurt
1/4 cup of cream
2 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp cardamom powder
1/4 tsp of salt
A few slivers of almonds

2 Cups of sugar
1 and 1/2 cups of water
Rose water flavor
METHOD : Boil water and sugar till thick . Allow to cool before adding the rose water flavor

  • Preheat oven at 325 degrees F
  • Beat butter with sugar until light and fluffy
  • Add salt and cardamom powder and mix well
  • Now add eggs one at a time and beat slowly
  • Beat yoghurt with cream together and set aside
  • Mix Semolina with baking powder
  • Now add Semolina to Butter and egg mixture alternating with the yoghurt and cream
  • Mix well until completely incorporated
  • Pour in buttered dish
  • Add slices of almonds on top of cake 
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown on top
  • Once outside the oven , pour the rose syrup on top of cake uniformly but very gently and slowly (You do not require to poke the cake - Semolina cake will absorb the syrup within minutes)
  • Allow to cool and cut in squares or diamond shapes, remove from baking dish and put on a tray or plate
  • Serve with a mint tea

If you want the cake to be even less sweet, eliminate the sugar completely from the cake. The syrup will be enough. You can serve it with some fruits. However, I found that 1/4 cup added to the cake mix was just perfect.
You may use full fat yoghurt and omit the cream altogether
Next time, I will add some shredded coconut as well


  1. Salam saaj.i also I used to enjoy eat basboussa cake a lot wen I was living in abu dhabi.u r right its very sweet.great u got the recipe.wil try it n com bak wid my result.u hav mentioned 1/2 butter! Wats the exact qty?

  2. Hi Noor, Thank you for the comment , I was so excited to post this recipe that I missed the quantity for the butter ! I just updated it. It's 1/2 cup or 1 stick of unsalted butter. Try it and let me know :)

  3. Hi this look awesome
    i want to try it now :)

  4. Hello La fille au foulard , let me know how it turns out :) Thanks for visiting my blog !

  5. Yasmine Mungul/Wednesday 18th Sept 2013 5:15pm

    Salaam,Sajeeda. I can't believe it after all these years (23) I'm in uk I was waiting for these awesome mauritian recipes. It brings back memories especially gato arouille, I still remember my sister, we love them ,when we used to break fast mum used to buy them. Also makatia Oh ALLAH thank you and you Sajeeda I will definitely try them . Your website is marvellous. Keep it up and may Allah reward you and your family both in this world and in the Hereafter and the whole muslim ummah AMEEN, I'm so excited. Fi amanillah.

  6. Hi Yasmine, Thank you very much for your kind words. Very much appreciated :) I am glad you are finding the blog useful and yes it certainly brings back good memories of Mauritian life for me as well. Having lived in Canada for a decade now, I still miss a lot of treats from back home. Thank you again for visiting my blog . More recipes to come IA.

  7. Hi dear..For cream do you mean Nestlé cream or double cream? Also if we omit the cream how much full fat yogurt should we use?