SFOUF (Lebanese Semolina Cake)

If you like semolina, turmeric and pine nuts, you have got to try this cake. Turmeric is a healthy spice, which is not only used in curries but also in desserts. I am sure there are different versions of it online or in cookbooks but the recipe I have was given to my mom by her cousin. It is my husband’s favorite dessert as he loves semolina. I have made this recipe with both fine and coarse semolina and I have to say that there isn’t a huge difference in texture, although I prefer fine semolina. Try with both and see which you like most or you could even go half and half..ooohh, I will have to try that and let you know how it goes. Looks pretty, doesn’t it, and incredibly easy to make.

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Ingredients:

2 cups flour

1 cup fine semolina (You could use coarse semolina and I have tried it but I prefer the texture of fine. Purchase at Middle Eastern stores. I get mine from Amazon)

4 tbsp powder milk (I use Nido but you can use any other kind)

3 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 cup oil or butter (I have made this with just butter and half butter, half oil. It turns out great no matter what you decide to use)

2 cups sugar

2 cups water (room temperature)

3 tsp turmeric

3 tbsp orange blossom water (you can get this at Middle Eastern stores or Amazon)

Pine nuts (as many as you like. If you don’t have pine nuts, you can use slivered blanched almonds or even whole almonds)

Place all dry ingredients in a bowl and mix. Beat butter and sugar in a stand mixer on medium speed until combined. Add water to butter and sugar and mix slowly. A little at a time-so as not to make it snow all over your counter-add dry ingredients to wet and mix well until combined. Add the blossom water and give it one last mix with a spatula. Pour into a greased light colored or glass pan and sprinkle with pine nuts. Bake for 25-30 minutes at 350° F or until it is set and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. The important thing is to let it brown on top and on the bottom. If you use a glass pan you will be able to see that the bottom has browned. Let it cool completely, although I admit I never wait 🙂 Cut into squares and enjoy with tea, coffee, or a glass of cold milk.

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