Gift roses : pistachio and rose Basboussa (semolina cake)

It takes all sorts to make a world. At a smaller scale, it also seems to hold true to make a couple. Take that pistachio and rose Basboussa for instance : no finger pointing but one of us just does not get just yet the beauty of this recipe. Given that it’s a recipe for 10 to 12 people, it’s a pretty good thing it does not go stale overnight because I end up eating the whole thing by myself and it takes me a couple of days.


  • Cardamome : 1 pinch
  • 150g shelled unsalted pistachios
  • 100g almond flour
  • 170g thin semolina
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 300g unsalted butter ( at room temperature )
  • 330g sugar + 100g
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 organic lemons
  • 2 tablespoon rose water + 8cl
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Mix the cardamome with the pistachios, the almond flour, the semolina, baking powder and a pinch of salt.
  2. Mix the sugar and butter together with your food processor, or with a firm hand and a whisk. Fold in the 4 beaten eggs, then the semolina mix.
  3. Add the zest of 1 lemon, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of rose water.
  4. Grease your tin, pour the dough in it and bake for 1 hour. After 50 minutes, bring to the boil 10cl of lemon juice, 8 cl of rose water and 100g of sugar. When the sugar has melted, remove from the heat and pour over the cake when it’s fully baked.
  5. Sprinkle with pistachio crumbs.


Cardamome has quite a distinct flavor, it might be what unsettled the delicate palate of my better half. I might give the recipe another go without it.

Recipe is from Yotam Ottolenghi