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Anissa Helou’s nammurah (semolina cake)
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350g caster sugar
90g unsalted butter, softened
300ml natural yogurt
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp tahini, for greasing
about 30g blanched almonds
1 tsp lemon juice
few drops rose water
1 tbsp orange blossom water
1 Put the semolina, 50g sugar and butter in a bowl and work together with your hands until blended. Add the yogurt and bicarbonate of soda and mix well until you have a firm batter.
2 Grease a 23cm square cake tin with the tahini, then tip in the batter and spread evenly, flattening it gently with the back of a spoon. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and leave to rest at room temperature for 3 hours.
3 Preheat the oven to 200˚C, gas mark 6. Cut the uncooked cake, in the tin, into 4.5cm squares and press an almond in the middle of each piece. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until golden.
4 Meanwhile, make the syrup. Heat the remaining 300g sugar, lemon juice and 120ml water in a pan over a medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to a boil and bubble for 3 minutes, then stir in the rose and orange blossom waters and bubble for a few seconds more; set aside.
5 Pour the warm syrup over the hot cake and set aside for 30 minutes to allow the syrup to absorb. Recut into squares; serve.
This recipe first appeared in Waitrose Kitchen magazine. myWaitrose members can download the Waitrose Kitchen app edition for FREE. Find out more.
Typical values per serving:
This recipe was first published in March 2015.