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Shamali

Slice of Shamali Cake

Looking for a new cake recipe or a breakfast sweet? Try this unique Armenian semolina cake with coconut flakes and orange blossom water syrup. It is a simple cake that is known by many other names including Namoura (Lebanese) and Basbousa (Egyptian). 

Each piece of cake is topped with an almond and makes a pretty presentation. 

Shamali Armenian Semolina Cake

What Ingredients Do I Need to Make Shamali?

Ingredients for Shamali

How Do I Make Shamali?

First, start off by greasing a 9 x 13 casserole dish with tahini. If you don't have tahini, you can substitute butter or oil.

Grease the casserole dish with tahini for Shamali cake

Next, make the syrup: 

Combine sugar and water in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil over high heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Reduce heat and simmer on low for an additional 6-8 minutes, until the syrup is slightly thickened. Stir in lemon juice and 2 teaspoons of orange blossom water. Set syrup aside to cool.

Make sugar syrup for Shamali
For the cake, mix together semolina flour, 2 teaspoons orange blossom water, melted butter, sugar and salt. Add baking soda and yogurt, followed by the coconut flakes. Stir together until everything is combined well, but don't overmix.
Note: You could use your own homemade greek yogurt or store-bought greek yogurt. Regular plain yogurt could also be substituted.  Select a yogurt that is 2% milk fat or greater. The combination of acidic yogurt and baking soda will react together and leaven the cake.
pour butter, sugar on semolina flour
Mix together all the ingredients for shamali batter
Spread batter evenly in casserole dish and smooth the top with a spatula. Score the batter into diagonal pieces. Place a blanched almond in each diamond.
Score the shamali batter before baking
Bake at 375 degree Fahrenheit for 25 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Pour the cooled syrup over the top of the hot cake. Then let the entire cake cool before re-cutting. (Shhh....I found that the piece of cake that I snuck while it was still warm was equally delicious.)
Pour sugar syrup over Shamali.
Shamali cake is served
Note: This post contains some affiliate links, which means that I could earn a small commission off items you purchase at no additional cost to you.
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