Semolina soaked in syrup are very popular all over Middle East. Moist cakes are my favorites and this recipe I adapted from the cookbook (Jerusalem) did not disappoint. This Semolina and Coconut and Orange Marmalade Cake, is moist, light textured and aromatic.
SEMOLINA, COCONUT AND MARMALADE CAKE
¾ cup sunflower oil
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
½ cup orange marmalade
grated peel of one orange
1/3 cup superfine sugar
¾ cup shredded dried coconut
¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 cup + 1½ tbsp semolina
2 tbsp ground almonds
2 tsp baking powder
To serve: greek yogurt with one or two drops orange blossom water (Note: I have found that different brands of orange blossom water are stronger than others so add only a bit, taste and add more if you wish).
1 cup superfine sugar
½ cup + 1½ tbsp water
1 tsp to 1 tbsp orange blossom water, to taste
1. Whisk oil with orange juice, marmalade, eggs and orange peel until marmalade dissolves. In a separate bowl whisk flour with semolina, almonds and baking powder. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until well combined. Mixture should be runny.
2. Divide batter between two 1 L loaf pans (or one large loaf pan) that has been greased and lined with waxed paper. Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 45 to 60 minutes for small cakes or 60 to 75 minutes for larger one or until a meat thermometer inserted into the middle of the cake reads 185F.
3. When cakes are almost baked, place sugar and water for syrup in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Add orange blossom water to taste. As soon as cakes are done, start brushing them with hot syrup using a pastry brush. Do this a few times allowing syrup to soak in. Be sure to use all the syrup.
4. When the cakes have cooled down remove from pans and cool completely. Serve with Greek yogurt flavoured with a few drops of orange blossom water if you wish.Makes 2 cakes