This cake is dense, moist and tender, inspired by Lebanese cake Sfouf. It makes a perfect gift or a treat for any occasion like Diwali, Ganesh Chaturthi, and Rakhi. I have flavored it with Star Anise and Rosewater which ups its flavor profile by a few notches. If you are not fond of these spices then use cardamom powder and vanilla essence instead. This cake is easy to pack and transport so should be good to mail to friends and family. It has a shelf life of 3 -4 days at room temperature. When I tested this cake initially, I got a rock solid cake every time. After the many failed trials this deliciously moist version materialized. I was so ecstatic on tasting the perfect version as it had everything I wanted in an eggless semolina cake! It was a feat to get it right. Thanks to my pastry knowledge, I could make some unusual modifications and the result is WOW! So let's roll up our sleeves and get together to create this lovely cake. The cake is simple to put together but requires a bit of planning because the batter needs an overnight resting time. A crucial step in the success of the cake.
- Butter, melted - 200 grams
- Sweetened condensed milk - 400 grams
- Water - 3/4 cup
- Semolina - 2 cups
- Coconut dessiccated - 1 cup
- Baking powder - 1 1 /2 teaspoon
- Flavorings: -
- Lemon zest - of 2 lemons
- Rose water - 1 1/2 teaspoon
- Baking spices: -
- Star anise - 3 nos.
- turmeric (for color) - 1/4 teaspoon
- Sugar Syrup: -
- Water - 2 cups
- Sugar - 1 1/2 cups
- Lemon Juice - 2 teaspoon
- Rosewater - 1 tbsp.
- Almonds (for decoration) - 15-20 nos.
Grease and dust an 8" baking pan and keep aside. Whisk together semolina, desiccated coconut and baking powder, combine well and keep aside.In a mixer grinder take a tablespoon of this dry mix add star anise and turmeric to it and grind into a fine powder. Mix this well in the dry mixture.
Whisk together semolina, desiccated coconut and baking powder, combine well and keep aside. In a mixer grinder take a tablespoon of this dry mixture, add star anise and turmeric and grind into a fine powder. Mix this well in the dry mixture.
In a large mixing bowl whisk together butter, sweetened condensed milk for a minute. Add the dry mix and water and stir until well combined. Pour and level the mixture into prepared pan. Decorate it with almonds, tightly cover it with cling film and refrigerate for a night or up to two days.
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C and bake for 35 - 45 minutes or until top is golden brown and the cake is firm to touch.
Prepare the sugar syrup: Add sugar and water to a saucepan. Cover it with the lid or a plate, cook on low flame for 10 - 15 minutes till the sugar is dissolved and the syrup is little thick in consistency. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice, rosewater and let it cool. It can be left out at room temperature for a couple of days.
After the cake is baked, remove it on the rack, Score it in the desired pattern or slices and pour all the cooled sugar syrup over it. In 5 minutes time, it will all get absorbed. Cool completely before serving. It can stay in an airtight container in the fridge for 5-7 days.
Tip: It tastes the best after a couple of days.