Semolina, coconut & marmalade cake

34B5442C-D521-4FB5-84BE-87D4A281526AAfter posting this cake on my Instagram stories I had lots of requests for the recipe so I have decided to post it along with a couple of tips. As usual it’s a very simple recipe by the fabulous cook Yotam Ottolenghi from the cookbook Jerusalem. It works as a stand alone with a cuppa but it’s utterly delicious if served with Greek yogurt as the book suggests. I kept back some of the syrup to drizzle over just before serving. To be honest that wasn’t intentional it’s because I didn’t use it all when soaking the cake after baking, which brings me to my first tip! You brush the first lot of syrup when the cake comes straight out of the oven, you let that soak in then add more and continue, I stopped adding thinking it might be too much! It obviously isn’t because the semolina must soak it up! So If like me you stop, adding it after is just as delicious!

It would work perfectly as a dessert for a dinner party and could easily be made the day before. In fact it keeps well wrapped in foil for five days and the book mentions it improves with time. ( wish I could say that ) Making it a stress free dream! As I’m writing this I’m thinking how delicious a glass of dessert wine would be, maybe an Orange and Flora Muscat.


My other little tip is the cooking time, I made it as one cake instead of two 500g ones, again this is mentioned in the recipe, you just have to change the timing accordingly, I caught mine just in time after 60 mins using fan at 160. The recipe works perfectly as any of Ottolenghi’s always have in my experience.

So if you make one 1kg instead of two 500g it will take 20-30 mins longer.

Preheat the oven: 180/160 fan gas 4

You will need:
180ml sunflower oil
240ml orange juice ( used freshly squeezed)
160g orange marmalade ( fine cut or without peel )
4 medium eggs
Grated zest of 1 orange
70g caster sugar
70g desiccated coconut
90g plain flour
180g semolina
2 tbsp ground almonds
2 tsp baking powder
Greek yogurt to serve or just a pot of tea!

Soaking syrup
2oog caster sugar
140ml water
1 tbsp orange blossom water, plus a little extra to add to the yogurt

Grease and line your tins or tin.
Whisk together the oil, orange juice, marmalade, eggs and orange zest until the marmalade dissolves. In a separate bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients and add to the wet. Mix until all is combined. The mixture should be runny.

Pour mixture into your tins if using two 500g divide it equally. Bake for 45-60 mins or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.

Near the end of the baking time, place all of the syrup ingredients in a small saucepan and bring it to the boil, remove from the heat. As soon as you take the cake/cakes out of the oven, start brushing on the syrup using a pastry brush, you will need to do this in a few goes, allowing it to soak in for a min or two before you carry on. Use up ALL the syrup.

Once the cake has cooled down a little remove from the tin and leave to cool completely. Serve as it is or as mention with Greek yogurt adding a little of the orange blossom water to taste.


I love to see your photos on instagram so don’t forget to let me know if you make it.

Deb x




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