Simply Lebanese

Sfouf

Sfouf
  • Prep Time
    5 mins
  • Cook Time
    40 mins
  • Serving
    12
Sfouf is a Lebanese turmeric and semolina cake. The turmeric gives the cake a beautiful yellow color and such a distinct and wonderful taste. The semolina in the cake gives nutty texture that is just so hard to resist!
Sfouf

Sfouf is a Lebanese semolina-based turmeric cake. The turmeric gives the cake a beautiful yellow color and such a distinct and wonderful taste. 

Sfouf is definitely my all-time favorite Lebanese cake. The flavor is incredible, the texture is crumbly but, soft as well. It pairs so well with a cup of coffee in the morning or a cup of tea in the evening.  It is perfect to enjoy during the month of Ramadan because, it is light enough to eat after a big iftar but, still satisfies your sweet tooth.

What is in Sfouf?

Sfouf is very different from any other cake you have eaten. It is an eggless cake and can very easily be made vegan, by swapping the cows milk for a plant-based one. What makes the cake so distinct, is the turmeric spice. The turmeric gives the cake the most delicious flavor and color.

Turmeric is considered a superfood, as it is loaded with antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory effects along with so many other wonderful health benefits. It has been used in cooking as a spice and as a medicinal herb in Asia, especially India, for thousands of years.

The cake is made with a combination of semolina and all-purpose flour. Semolina is a high-gluten flour usually used in pasta. Some people prefer to use only flour or only semolina when making sfouf, but I love it with the perfect mix of both. The semolina gives the cake a nuttier texture than just using flour alone. When buying semolina, you will notice it comes as “fine semolina” (or semolina flour) and “coarse semolina.” You can use one or the other but I love to mix both, it truly gives the cake the perfect texture.

Sfouf

 

How do you make Sfouf?

Sfouf is actually a very easy dessert to make. All you have to do is mix all of the dry ingredients together before adding the wet ingredients. The cake batter will be thick but, the cake comes out so soft.

The traditional way of greasing the cake pan is to do it with tahini as it gives the cake an even nuttier flavor. But, you can you non-stick spray as well. Sfouf is topped with either blanched halved almonds or pine nuts. Both work wonderfully with the cake, I use whatever I have on hand that day.

You can use a large round baking pan or a rectangular one to bake the cake in. I love to arrange the nuts on the cake in a pretty decor and cut it into small slices before serving. 

 

Cake lasts 7 to 10 days covered at room temperature.

STEP 1

Preheat the oven to 375F. Spread 1 tablespoon of tahini paste in an 8×10 rectangle baking pan or a round 8×8. ** You can use cooking spray or butter instead of tahini.

STEP 2

In a large bowl, add the flour, fine semolina, coarse semolina, baking powder, turmeric and sugar and mix well using a whisk.

STEP 3

Add the oil and milk.

Whisk well until fully combined.

Sfouf

STEP 4

Pour the mixture into the baking dish and top with the pine nuts or almonds. Bake for 30-35 minutes.

Broil for an additional 2-4 minutes for a beautiful caramel colored top. 

Sfouf
Sfouf

Once the cake has fully cooled, cut into square or in a diagonal shape.

Sfouf
Sfouf
Sfouf

Sfouf (Lebanese Turmeric Cake)

Sfouf is a Lebanese turmeric and semolina cake. The turmeric gives the cake a beautiful yellow color and such a distinct and wonderful taste. The semolina in the cake gives nutty texture that is just so hard to resist!
4.38 from 35 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine: Lebanese
Keyword: cake, Lebanese almond-semolina cake, sfouf, turmeric
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 12 people
Calories: 461kcal
Author: Iman

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup Fine Semolina
  • ¾ cup Coarse Semolina
  • cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 cups White Granulated Sugar
  • 2 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 1 tb. Turmeric
  • 1 cup Whole Milk or lower fat milk.
  • 1 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 tb. Tahini
  • ¼ cup Pine Nuts or Almonds

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375F. Spread 1 tablespoon of tahini paste in an 8x10 rectangle baking pan or a round 8x8. ** You can use cooking spray or butter instead of tahini.
  • In a large bowl, add the flour, fine semolina, course semolina, baking powder, turmeric and sugar and mix well using a whisk.
  • Add the oil and milk and whisk well until fully combined. 
  • Pour the mixture into the baking dish and top with the pine nuts or almonds. Bake for 35-40 minutes. Broil for an additional 2-4 minutes for a beautiful caramel colored top. 
  • Once the cake has fully cooled, cut into square or in a diagonal shape. 

Notes

Cake lasts a week to ten days covered at room temperature.

Nutrition

Calories: 461kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 98mg | Potassium: 137mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 35IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 82mg | Iron: 2mg

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    Recipe Reviews

    • Lauren

      overflowed my 8×8, so used a 9×9. Still too full. Baked for 40 minutes but not done. What did I do wrong?

      • Iman

        That’s very strange. Did you use measuring cups or mugs? Also, how accurate is your oven temperature because I know a lot of ovens run hotter than others. For me, the sfouf has never taken more than 40 min.

    • Nadine

      5 stars
      I’m a Pom and my hubby is Leb from Australia and I’ve tried many a Sfouf cake recipe but your recipe is the best! I’m sure it has to do with the texture and the 3 varieties of flour & semolina. Light, fluffy and crumbly – just perfect. Thank you. 🥰

      • Iman

        That is so kind of you, and yes I agree, the texture comes out perfect!!

    • Kristine

      Hi! I want to try this recipe however I’m kinda confused with the types of semolina. I actually have semolina already but I don’t know if that is coarse or fine and I really don’t want to buy another bag of semolina just for this recipe. So, can I use any type of semolina (I’m guessing mine is ‘fine’ type of semolina) and if yes, how would be the measurements? Thanks a lot!

      • Iman

        Hello! Yes, I have listed in the post that if you only have 1 type of semolina you can definitely just use that one. It won’t make too much of a difference in texture. Measurements are a 1:1 ratio for semolina and flour so 1 1/2 cup semolina. Enjoy!

    • JacqBrisbane

      4 stars
      Semolina is fine or COARSE rather than “course”. 🙂

      • Iman

        Thank you, how silly of me, just corrected!

    • David

      Also, since sugars are carbs, that the nutrition information says there are 33.6 grams of sugar, but only 1 gram of carbs is also a typo. In this case, I cannot hazard a guess at the actual carb total. I try to keep a close eye on my nutritional intake, even when I’m enjoying something like sfouf … especially then. So I like to be sure the data I’m using is reasonably accurate.

      • Iman

        I am updating the nutrition now to reflect the correct numbers, thank you.

        • vany

          Hi,
          yes I had same comment about serving size and carb per serving. It is now September and the incorrect info is still listed. just wanted to let you know. also have you ever substituted the sugar for another sweetener instead, like honey or date syrup? do you think it’ll affect the texture completely?

          • Iman

            The nutrition has been glitchy, it should be fixed now! Honey might change the texture but, you can try!

    • David

      A serving size of 1 gram has 428 calories?! That’s a typo. What’s the actual serving size? I love the recipe, but cannot be sure of the measurement. I’m guessing the actual serving size for the nutrition information shown is 100 grams?

      • Iman

        The entire cake is cut into 12 slices, and the serving size is 1 very filling slice! Thank you for pointing out the mistake with serving size, it is supposed to say 1 slice not g. Will fix it asap!

    • Eve

      I love your sfouf recipe! I’m going to make it (again) for the weekend – it’s one of our favourites 🙂

      • Iman

        Yay! So glad you think so, its one of our favorites as well.

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