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Sfouf – Turmeric and Semolina Cake!

People often ask me about different ways they can use Esme + Sita Organic Turmeric powder.  As you know, Turmeric is not just a quintessential spice in curries, but it has a plethora of health benefits too.

In India it’s been an Ayurvedic remedy used for more than 4,000 years. Its’ key antioxidant, Curcumin, boasts an array of researched-backed and time-tested benefits and has an incredible list of healing properties, that includes, antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-carcinogenic, anti-mutagenic and anti-inflammatory. Studies are being done about how turmeric powder can help with easing depression and joint pain. It can help fight off viral infections like the flu. It can also help lower LDL, the bad cholesterol. Turmeric powder can help treat skin conditions like wound healing and calm the pores to help reduce acne. It can also prevent scarring and helps control psoriasis flareups. There are so many benefits too numerous to list here. It’s always a good idea to speak to your family doctor first before starting any regime.

I try and look for unusual ways to include Turmeric powder in the foods I eat, and I found a wonderful recipe from the Feel Good Foodie blog for a Turmeric and Semolina Cake called Sfouf!  It’s an iconic cake from Lebanon and made from simple ingredients. Sfouf means, “lines”, in Arabic and refers to the traditional diagonal shapes the cake is cut. Although you can cut into squares, diamonds or rectangles. The cake can be made vegan by substituting a few of the ingredients. It’s a beautiful, moist, golden coloured cake. In Lebanon, people sometimes add a little rose water to give it a middle eastern taste, but you could add a little vanilla or maple syrup to heighten up the taste. What’s unusual about this cake is that instead of using butter to coat the cake tin, you add Tahini paste and then pour the mixed batter over the Tahini.  It gives the cake a slightly nutty flavour.


You will need a 9 x 9 inch Square Cake Tin.


1 ½ cup coarse semolina or fine, or mixture of both

½ cup all-purpose or cake flour

 1 tablespoon Esme + Sita organic Turmeric Powder

1 cup sugar

1 ½ teaspoons Baking powder

1 cup Milk or Almond milk

1 cup vegetable oil

1-2 tablespoons of Tahini paste

¼ cup Pine nuts or raw Almonds chopped or kept whole.



  1. Preheat the oven to 375C.
  2. Spread 1 to 2 tablespoons of Tahini paste to cover the bottom of an 9 x 9 square pan or an 8 x 8 round cake tin. You can use cooking oil spray or butter if you don’t have any tahini paste.
  3. In a bowl, add the fine semolina, course semolina, flour, sugar, baking powder and turmeric powder. Mix well using a whisk.
  4. Add the oil and milk and whisk until it’s amalgamated.
  5. Pour the batter into the cake pan and sprinkle the pine nuts or almonds over the top.
  6. Bake for 40-45 minutes.  
  7. Once the cake has cooled, cut into square or diagonal shapes and serve.
  8. The cake lasts 7-10 days when stored at room temperature covered up.