Desserts. No meal or festivity is complete without them. Basbousa is a wonderful option for almond lovers.
To get started, you’ll need the following ingredients.
1/2 lb or 8 oz of Semolina or Farina
8 oz. of Sour Cream
3/4 cup of Sugar
1 & 1/2 sticks of soft butter
About 2 dozen almonds (with skin)
The following Ingredients are used for the syrup:
For Syrup:3/4 Cup Sugar
1/3 Cup of Water or Just enough to dissolve sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
These ingredients are scaled for a 9x9 inch glass cooking pan
Preheat oven to 350°
Butter the pan well. We mean really well.
Preparing the Almonds:
Boil the almonds in water for just a couple of minutes. Then run the almonds through some cold water. This loosens the skin to the almonds allowing the skin to come right off when rubbing them with your hands. Peel the skin from about a dozen almonds and cut them in half the long way.
Making the Basbousa Foundation
With a cooking mixer and a wire whip attachment, beat butter for 1 minute at a medium to low speed
Add in the sugar and beat a high speed until light and fluffy. Add the sour cream into the mix next and mix well for another minute.
Gradually add the Semolina and mix until blended. Do not over beat.
Pour the batter into pan. Make sure the batter is spread evenly through the edges and corners of the pan
Lay the almond halves in a grid design across the batter (see image below for example). So that when Basbousa is cut (after cooking) 1 almond half lies in the center of each piece.
Bake at 350° for approximately 1 hour or until light golden brown
Making the Syrup:
While Basbousa is baking make the syrup.
Place sugar in a small sauce pan and add just enough water to cover/dissolve the sugar
Heat sugar water over medium high heat until mixture begins to boil
Add the 1 tsp of lemon juice
Boil and continue to stir until it forms the very slightest bit of color
Useful Tip: An easy way to determine if the syrup is ready/at the right consistency is to place one drop of syrup on a plate and let the drop cool. Tilt the plate. If the drop runs down the plate then the syrup is not yet ready.
When the Basbousa is done, immediately remove from the oven and cut into diamond shaped pieces.
Spoon the syrup evenly over the whole pan. Make sure that the Syrup falls into the edges and cut lines.
Place pan back into the warm oven but with oven off. Have the Basbousa sit in oven until cooled
This recipe comes courtesy of Esther El-Kodsi.