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Basbousa topped with walnuts
Alternative namesBasbuusa, Hareeseh,Nammoura [1]
Region or state Egypt, Middle East, North Africa , the Balkans, the Caucasus
Serving temperatureCold or Warm
Main ingredientsSemolina or farina, syrup, yogurt
VariationsOrange blossom syrup or rose
Food energy
(per serving)
Calorie rich kcal

Basbousa or Hareeseh, or Nammoura (Arabic: بسبوسة‎), is a traditional Middle Eastern sweet cake.[2] It is made from a semolina batter [3] and sweetened with orange flower water or rose water simple syrup. The semolina cake is featured in Arab cuisine, Turkish cuisine, Greek cuisine, Armenian cuisine, Israeli cuisine and many others. It is called basbousa in Arabic and shamali in Armenian. The Persian name for the cake, revani, has also entered the Greek and Turkish languages.


Basbousa Middle East, the Balkans and North Africa topped with almonds

It is found in the cuisines of the Middle East, the Balkans and the North Africa under a variety of names.

  • Arabic: بسبوسة basbūsah, هريسة harīsa, and nammoura
  • Armenian: Շամալի shamali
  • Greek: ραβανί or ρεβανί (ravani or revani).
  • Turkish: revani or ravani (from Persian[4])

Basbousa is often called "hareesa" in the Levant, the Maghreb, and the Egyptian city of Alexandria. Basbousa is a particularly popular dessert among the Egyptian Coptic Christians for fasts, such as Great Lent and the Nativity Fast, as it can be made vegan.


Pastūsha (sometimes stylized as Pastūçha) is a variant of basbousa that originated in Kuwait in the 2010s. Like basbousa, it is made from semolina soaked in sweet syrup. It is characterized by the addition of finely ground pistachios and orange flower water.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Καλόν πράμαν ή σιάμαλι". (in Greek). Cyprus Food Virtual Museum. Retrieved 26 November 2015.
  2. ^ The Recipes of Africa. p. 241. Retrieved 2014-07-18.
  3. ^ "Arabic Dessert".
  4. ^ "Nishanyan - Turkish etymological dictionary: Revani (in Turkish)". Retrieved 2014-07-18.

Works cited

  • Davidson, Alan (2014). Oxford companion to food. [S.l.]: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0199677337.