Food is definitely the proverbial glue that binds families together, and there’s nothing more special than bringing a delightful smile on their faces by offering delicious and healthy food.
My husband is a foodie, and loves to try special recipes from different cuisines. He loves the food from this side of the World, and therefore, I try a few Middle Eastern recipes once in a while. Although not too keen on desserts, he almost finished this new recipe that I tried from one of the magazines that we get in UAE- ‘Friday’. This is from their special edition of Ramadan recipes called Almond Basbousa with Vanilla and Rose syrup.
As the name suggests, this Middle Eastern recipe (sweet semolina cake) is incredibly easy to make. It’s topped with a delicious rosewater and lemon syrup, and is perfect for parties and iftar evenings and, even on the big day of Ramadan. Variations of this recipe differ from country to country and each tastes even better, with cinnamon syrup, or shredded coconut;
The Almond Basbousa recipe is easy to prepare. Traditionally, the Almond Basbousa is served with tea and coffee .The baked cake would be dry, and then we soak it up with some beautifully-scented sugar syrup. I flavored it with rosewater but you could also use orange blossom water or some honey water or vanilla, to suit your tastes.
The syrup is very sweet, and therefore I just used half the measure for making the syrup….and it was perfect. If you want it sweeter, just the double the measure.
The cooled sugar syrup is poured over hot semolina cake to soften and sweeten it. The temperature differences between the syrup and the Basbousa cake results in greater absorption, and taste. Make this one of your iftar specials this weekend and wow your guests. Bring in the Middle Eastern touch to your kitchens and dinner tables
Preheat oven to 190 C.Add all ingredients one by one- butter, almonds, condensed milk, semolina and water, and stir using a wooden spoon, until everything has been combined.
Pour mixture into a baking tin (i used a square cake pan). Bake for 35- 40 minutes, until the top turn golden, and the skewer test comes out clean.
Meanwhile, soon afer the mixture is prepared, prepare the syrup..In a saucepan, add sugar, water and the vanilla seeds..Bring it to a boil, and then simmer for 7-8 minutes, until the syrup starts to thicken a bit. Remove the pan from the stove and add the rosewater, lemon juice and the ground almonds. Keep it to cool.
As soon as the basbousa is ready, and removed from the oven, pour the cooled syrup over it..Yes the hot basbousa needs to absorb the syrup immediately..This keeps it moist and absorbs all the flavors in the syrup.Once it has cooled, refrigerate it.
Cut them into slices, diamond or square shapes, and garnish it with almond flakes, and fresh berries and currants....No one can eat just one...