Saffron Cheesecake Basbousa

Basbousa is a type of famous and traditional dessert in the Middle East, dating back hundreds of years. It is believed to have originated in Egypt, although other narratives suggest its roots can be traced back to the Ottoman Empire, which introduced it to the Egyptian heritage. Basbousa is made from a simple ingredient, semolina, and can be stuffed with various fillings, such as cream and others. It is known for its ease of preparation, requiring little time and no complex ingredients.

 

The dessert goes by several names across the Arab world, including basbousa, namoura, harisa, and semolina harisa. It is said that the name “basbousa” is derived from the word “bass”, which means mixing semolina with ghee or oil. Basbousa has a unique, special flavor that is associated with beautiful memories in our minds.

 

Many countries offer basbousa in different forms and flavors. Some add orange blossom water and coconut, others serve it with various fillings, and some prefer it hot while others like it cold. Thus, basbousa varies from one community to another and even from one house to another.

The Ingredients

Biscuit Layer:

  • 200 g ground biscuits
  • 70 g melted Baker’s Choice
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Cheesecake Layer:

  • 300 g cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 tablespoon rose water

Basbousa Layer:

  • 170 g cream
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 50 g melted Baker’s Choice
  • 1 cup semolina
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • Saffron + 2 tablespoons warm water
  • Syrup

How to prepare

  1. In a bowl, mix the ground biscuits, Baker’s Choice, and sugar until well combined.
  2. Spread the biscuit mixture into a cheesecake pan, pressing evenly to flatten the surface.
  3. In another bowl, mix cream cheese, then add sugar, egg, vanilla, rose water, and flour until smooth.
  4. Spread the mixture over the biscuit layer and bake at 170 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes until set.
  5. Prepare the basbousa layer, add cream, egg, vanilla, Baker’s Choice, and saffron infusion, and mix until combined.
  6. Add semolina and baking powder and stir all ingredients together.
  7. Spread the basbousa mixture over the cheesecake layer and bake at 170 degrees Celsius from the top for 30 minutes.
  8. After baking, immediately drizzle with a suitable amount of syrup and garnish with pistachios and roses as desired. Serve with love.

Preparing the recipe

preparation time

55 minutes

difficulty

easy

Serves

12 pieces

Cooking time

25 minutes

Calories

450 kcal

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How to prepare

  1. In a bowl, mix the ground biscuits, Baker’s Choice, and sugar until well combined.
  2. Spread the biscuit mixture into a cheesecake pan, pressing evenly to flatten the surface.
  3. In another bowl, mix cream cheese, then add sugar, egg, vanilla, rose water, and flour until smooth.
  4. Spread the mixture over the biscuit layer and bake at 170 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes until set.
  5. Prepare the basbousa layer, add cream, egg, vanilla, Baker’s Choice, and saffron infusion, and mix until combined.
  6. Add semolina and baking powder and stir all ingredients together.
  7. Spread the basbousa mixture over the cheesecake layer and bake at 170 degrees Celsius from the top for 30 minutes.
  8. After baking, immediately drizzle with a suitable amount of syrup and garnish with pistachios and roses as desired. Serve with love.

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