Namoura


Namoura is a traditional dessert, it is very easy and delicious. This authentic Lebanese sweet is a moist semolina kind of cake soaked in our famous syrup which is flavoured from both the orange blossom water and the rose water. This recipe is simple and rich at the same time. You don’t have to wait for it to rest, it can be baked straight after preparing it. This dessert is egg free for those who can’t include them in their food. Actually namoura is one of my favorites and until today I still select a piece of namoura for my dessert among a variety of our syrup soaked sweet.

Prep.time: 20 mins

Cooking time: 35 mins

Serves: 8 to 10

INGREDIENTS:

3 cups coarse semolina

3/4 cup fine semolina

1 cup sugar

3/4 cup unsalted butter

3/4 cup milk

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp rose water

2 tbsp orange blossom water

1 tbsp of tahini paste if not available it can replaced with oil

1/4 cup of blanched almonds or almonds peeled and split in half

Syrup:

3 cups sugar

2 cups water

1 tsp squeezed lemon

2 tbsp rose water

2 tbsp orange blossom water

PREPARATION: To make the syrup put the sugar, water and the lemon juice in a small cooking pot over medium heat stirring to dissolve, boil for 5 to 7 mins. Add the rose water and orange blossom water then set aside. For the whole almonds, soak it in hot water for an hour or more then peel and split them.

To make the semolina cake: In a large mixing bowl, combine coarse semolina, fine semolina, sugar and baking powder. Melt the butter in a small pot over low heat until it melts, preventing it from boiling then add it with the milk and both orange blossom and rose water to the mixture. Mix all the ingredients together with your hand until becoming a dough.

Heat the oven to 375 degrees F ( 180 to 190 degrees C ). Spread the tahini in the bottom and sides of a 24 cm round pan or any different shape pan to prevent the paste from sticking. It can be greased with oil if tahini is not convenient but I prefer using tahini.

Press the namoura dough in the pan at the same level, if getting sticky use melted butter to flatten the top with your hand. Cut equally into diamond or square shaped pieces before baking. Decorate each piece with a blanched almond pressing it gently to make sure it doesn’t drop. Bake for 30 mins or until the edges looks light brownish then few mins from the top until golden. While the namoura is hot pour the syrup on top slowly over the whole cake until it absorbs it all. Set aside to cool, cut and serve.

This recipe is very simple and rich. You don’t have to wait for it to rest for long, it can be baked straight after preparing it. The results are a dense, rich and delicious dessert, each piece topped with a piece of almond which adds to it an amazing roasted nutty taste. It is good anytime, as a dessert after a meal or even with an afternoon cup of coffee or tea.

ENJOY!!