Basbousa– Harisi


  • Servings: 8-12
  • Difficulty: easy
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There is so many names for this delicious, sugary sweet and yummy dessert. Either Basbousa, Namora or Harisi as we call it in my house.


Whatever may the name be or giving, I believe that it should be only called delicious, scrumptious, sweet and ohhh sooo addicting…I guarantee there is no way to eat only one piece, it is that good!!

Every time I bake a pan of this amazing dessert we have few pieces and give the rest away to friends and families so I don’t have this guilty pleasure around me…

Harisi is served at weddings, engagements and birthday parties as a symbol of happy times and gathering.

Basbousa – Harisi is made with coarse semolina, butter of course and topped with a delicious flavorful rose water syrup..


The syrup that I always make for this awesome cake is made with rose water, it adds a touch of sweet and delicious fragrance…

I have used orange blossom water, Jasmin essence and lemon juice in different versions of this syrup and they all turned out with amazing flavors…


I wrote this recipe back in high school in my home economics class, This was my first cooking notebook and that’s how my cooking and baking journey have started…This notebook have seen better days as you could see but its my happy memories, I get so exciting every time I open it or look at it, after all I wrote my first recipe in it…


To this old recipe I added unsweetened shredded coconuts, just as an extra-added delicious flavor.


I have made this cake as sugar free cake for my husband so many times and it was equally sweet and yummy as much as it sugary counterpart…


.3 cups of coarse semolina

.1 stick room temperature butter

.1 cup sugar substitutes or regular sugar

.4 tbsp. baking powder

.3 cups plain yogurt

.4 tbsp. untoasted peanuts or almonds or pine nuts. (for this version I choose almonds).

.1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconuts


.6 cups sugar substitute or regular sugar

.1 cup water

.1/8 tsp fresh nutmeg

.2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

.3 tbsp. rose water

.1 stick of cinnamon

Always prepare the syrup before baking the harisi.

In a medium sauce pot, add syrup ingredient except the rose water, stir until sugar is fully dissolved.

Bring to boil on high heat about 2-5 minutes, lower the heat and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes or until its semi thick.

Off the heat add rose water and carefully stir until it’s combined.

Set aside to cool.

For The Cake

Preheat oven 355

Butter an 8 x 8 baking pan , set aside.

In a large bowl mix coarse semolina and butter, with clean hands work the semolina into the butter until both incorporated and resemble a coarse crumbs.

Add baking powder, sugar, shredded coconuts and yogurt, mix well with rubber spatula until all combined.

Add the batter to the prepared pan and smooth with rubber spatula making sure it’s leveled.

With a dinner knife score the batter into small or large triangles, place one peanut or almond or pine nuts in each triangle.

Bake for 30-40 minutes.

If your oven does not brown correctly after the baking time is up, turn it off and turn the broiler on high and positon the pan on the lowest rack in your oven under the broiler, broil for 1-2 minutes or until golden brown making sure not to go over the 2 minutes or it will dry out and burn, rotate the pan if necessary.

Remove the pan from the oven and place it onto a cooling rack, pour the entire syrup on top of the harisi while it’s still hot, with a dinner knife carefully rescore the triangles again.

Let the pan stand until completely cooled, about 30-40 minutes or preferably overnight if you have the patience to wait that long.

Serve with hot tea or Arabic coffee.


20 thoughts on “Basbousa– Harisi

  1. OMG! That’s IT! The cake I had in Israel that No bloody-one would ever give me a recipe for! The cake I had daily…..melt in your mouth cake that was better than anything I had ever eaten in my life cake! You are undoubtedly my HERO!

  2. Ha….I did say anyone liking a comment (thank you) would get a visit 😁

    However…it’s made me hungry…and thus annoyed enough to follow your blog in order to remember the flipping ingredients for the next shopping trip 🙃

    Love the look here too!!

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