Foodie Friday: Lemon and Yogurt Semolina Cake

posted in: Baking, Foodie Friday, Recipes 46 comments

This picture probably looks a lot like my photos of other baked goods I’ve posted here – yellow. And yes, I do have an obsession with lemon.

I need to improve my photography and presentation skills, ahem.

However, don’t let that deter you from trying this easy to make cake I found in a Greek cookbook I bought years ago.

Lemon and yogurt semolina cake

Lemon and Yogurt Semolina Cake
A Greek recipe for lemon and yogurt semolina cake
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For the cake
  1. 1/2 cup/ 125g butter, softened
  2. 1/4 cup/ 175g caster (superfine) sugar
  3. Zest of 1 lemon
  4. 4 eggs
  5. 1 cup/ 8 oz/ 250g fine farina (semolina, cream of wheat)
  6. 2 tsp/ 10g baking powder
  7. 1 cup/ 8 oz/ 250g ground almonds
  8. 1 cup/ 8 oz/ 250g raisins
  9. 1/2 cup/ 4 oz/ 125g flaked almonds
  10. 1 scant cup/ 7 oz/ 200g yogurt
For the syrup
  1. 1 cup/ 8 oz/ 250g caster (superfine) sugar
  2. 1/2 cup/ 4fl oz/ 250ml lemon juice
  3. 1/2 cup/ 4 fl oz/ 250ml honey
  4. 1 cup/ 8 oz 250 ml whipping cream, to serve
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F/ 180°C.
  2. Grease an 8in/ 20cm cake pan, and line with paper.
  3. In a large bowl, combine butter, sugar and lemon zest. Using an electric beater, cream butter, sugar and zest until light and fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  5. Fold in semolina, baking powder and ground almonds. Add raisins, almonds and yogurt, light fold in.
  6. Pour mixture into prepared cake pan and bake for 35-45 minutes (or until cake is lightly browned on top).
  7. To make the syrup, combine sugar, lemon juice and honey in a small saucepan. Cook on a low heat for 15-20 minutes, or the liquid thickens into a syrup.
  8. Using a metal skewer, poke holes in the cake at regular intervals. Cook syrup slightly, then pour over the cake so that it absorbs the syrup. Serve with whipped cream.
  1. I made the cake without the raisins (my husband doesn't like them) and flaked almonds (I don't like them), but the cake tastes awesome anyway. Oh, and neither of us like whipped cream either. Yeah, when do I ever follow a recipe to the T?
Writing, Wishing

Right before writing this, I ate the cake after taking the photo above, with a cup of hot tea. Ahem.

Make it and enjoy!

Want to come over for tea?


Alison Lee is a former PR and marketing professional turned work-at-home mother. After a 10-year career in various PR agencies, and of the world’s biggest sports brands, Alison traded in product launches and world travel, for sippy cups, diapers, and breastfeeding. Alison's writing has been featured on Mamalode, On Parenting at The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Everyday Family, Scary Mommy, and She is one of 35 essayists in the anthology, My Other Ex: Women’s True Stories of Leaving and Losing Friends. In 2012, she founded Little Love Media, a social media consultancy specializing in blog book tours, and because she doesn’t sleep, is an editor at BonBon Break, an online magazine. Alison lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with her husband and four children (two boys and boy/ girl twins).

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  • February 24, 2012 Ann

    I was wondering where the raisins were! The cake looks AMAZING! I love citrus in baked goods!
    Ann recently wrote…Coronation Chicken CurryMy Profile

    • February 24, 2012 Alison

      Personally, I would have LOVED the raisins in the cake – alas, I bake for more than just me!

  • February 24, 2012 Not a Perfect Mom

    I was just about to leave a sad sad comment that we can’t eat that since my oldest has a stupid nut allergy…
    but yay! Now I know it doesn’t matter
    Not a Perfect Mom recently wrote…It’s Not LemonadeMy Profile

    • February 24, 2012 Alison

      There is ground almond in the recipe – check first okay? 🙂

  • February 24, 2012 AG

    Wow, looks so yum. I love to bake and will definitely try this recipe. My son loves to “help” me, he is the stirrer, so it will be a family event. Thank you and try some more baking recipes, looks like you did a good job momma!
    AG recently wrote…Time-Out Thursday- Timeout with the KidsMy Profile

    • February 24, 2012 Alison

      Thank you so much! Have fun baking, doing it with kids is so much fun!

  • February 24, 2012 Mary Trunk

    I hate baking but that picture and my own obsession with lemon makes me want to bake that cake. Thanks!

    • February 24, 2012 Alison

      Give it a go, it’s real easy!

  • February 24, 2012 My Inner Chick

    Everything is BETTER w/ Lemon, Mama, A.

    This looks Yummmmmy & Lemony!!

    Now, All I need is a glass of Merlot to wash it down with. Xx
    My Inner Chick recently wrote…The Greatest Sin Of AllMy Profile

    • February 24, 2012 Alison

      I agree, Kim!

  • February 24, 2012 Stasha

    Yes please! Dash of milk, one sugar and 3 pieces of cake please. Much obliged.
    Stasha recently wrote…My day in picturesMy Profile

    • February 24, 2012 Alison

      See you at 4pm on Saturday? 😉

  • February 24, 2012 Catheryn

    This looks yummy and it shouts ‘MUST TRY!’

    You are looking good too Alison! 🙂
    Catheryn recently wrote…Hotel Amenities – What Do You Do With ThemMy Profile

    • February 25, 2012 Alison

      Thanks Catheryn!

  • As it so happens I have an excess of yoghurt in my refigerator…
    Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes recently wrote…A day in the life…My Profile

    • February 25, 2012 Alison

      Time to bake!

  • February 24, 2012 Galit Breen

    This sounds absolutely delicious, Alison!

    (I, too, love all that is yellow, and all that is lemon! Yum!)

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      Soul sistahs!

  • February 24, 2012 Megan Lawing

    This looks DELISH!!! I’ve gotta make this! Pinning…NOW!
    Megan Lawing recently wrote…Cake Batter PieMy Profile

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      Thank you for Pinning!

  • February 25, 2012 Runnermom-jen

    I love your foodie Fridays!! And I’m with you about the almonds, I’d leave those out too.
    Happy Friday 🙂
    Runnermom-jen recently wrote…On Being High Maintenance…My Profile

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      Aw, thanks Jen!! Hope you had a fab weekend!

  • February 25, 2012 Kelley

    That looks REALLY good! I also love lemon and was thinking that you liked lemon a lot, too. I laughed when I saw your comment about your obsession with it. This kind of looks like cornbread. Really, really good cornbread. I will have to try it!
    Kelley recently wrote…Today, we salute YOU…Ms. Starbucks Barista Lady!!My Profile

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      I am totally obsessed with lemon – I believe it makes everything better! Do try it!

  • February 25, 2012 Natalie

    Girl I’m beginning to think you have a love infatuation with lemon! 🙂
    Natalie recently wrote…The Before and AfterMy Profile

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      Hah, you can tell? 😉

  • February 25, 2012 Practical Parenting

    Yum! Im trying this for sure. I love lemon cakes
    Practical Parenting recently wrote…Broken TracksMy Profile

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      Yay, do try!

  • February 25, 2012 Devon Riesenberg

    This looks TO DIE FOR! I’m having a real sweet craving tonight! Your food photography skills are up to par because I feel like I could bite into this cake right now…
    Devon Riesenberg recently wrote…When The Cat’s Away…My Profile

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      Thanks Devon, that’s awfully nice of you to say!

  • February 26, 2012 Jessica

    Yes! I would love to come over for tea! I like all thing lemon-y, too! I can’t wait to give this a try. So do you find that you’re baking more with this pregnancy? I remember baking a lot in the beginning of my pregnancy, but then nausea from all sugary smells prevented me from continuing. :(It was fun while it lasted, however.

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      Yes I totally bake more when pregnant!! It’s like a substitute for nesting, which I totally don’t feel 🙂

  • February 26, 2012 Elena

    Looks delish! I would love to come over for tea and this cake! I love that you didn’t put in the raisins. I don’t think I’d like it with them in there.
    Elena recently wrote…Pin It To Win ItMy Profile

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      I would love to have you over for tea! This recipe has a really good base so taking out one or two ingredients totally did not hurt its taste.

  • February 26, 2012 dumb mom

    Looks so moist! Kinda also looks like cornbread, but I bet way tastier!
    dumb mom recently wrote…TGIPinterest Pin This!: SpringMy Profile

    • February 26, 2012 Alison

      It was pretty moist! I haven’t had cornbread before (I know, what??) but this cake was DELISH.

  • February 27, 2012 Jen Has A Pen

    I’m not a huge lemon fan, but George is. I also tried Indian food for the first time last week and they served a semolina style dessert. Pretty frickin’ good.
    Jen Has A Pen recently wrote…KaleMy Profile

    • February 27, 2012 Alison

      Anything with semolina in it is a good dessert in my books! (and I LOVE Indian food!)

  • February 27, 2012 Kimberly

    Mmm, I love lemon!
    Kimberly recently wrote…Our Useless TalentMy Profile

    • February 27, 2012 Alison


  • February 28, 2012 Lady Jennie

    So interesting. It looks dense, which is a good thing.
    Lady Jennie recently wrote…Basic Necessities: WaterMy Profile

    • February 28, 2012 Alison

      It is dense, which is why the syrup is essential -gets all the yummy honey goodness in there and helps keep it moist.

  • February 28, 2012 Jessica

    I would skip the raisins and almonds if I made this.
    Jessica recently wrote…I Have My Monster MomentsMy Profile

    • February 28, 2012 Alison

      Great minds….

  • March 10, 2012 Alexandra

    Oh, yes.

    So perfect with coffee.

    Beautiful pictures, Alison.
    Alexandra recently wrote…Oh, Adele,My Profile

    • March 10, 2012 Alison

      Oh it is yummy with coffee or tea. And thank you!

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