A deliciously spiced treat for any time of day, or year
Serves 20
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Made of semolina and almonds, our recipe for halva, a puddling-like, Middle Eastern dessert is a treat for the senses. The union of cinnamon, orange rind and raisins make a divine fragrance that will permeate the room as your halva starts taking shape on the pan. Perfect for any time of the day or year.


  • 2 cups (440 g) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 1 litre (4 cups) water
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 220 g butter, chopped coarsely
  • 2 cup (320 g) semolina
  • 1/2 cup (80 g) coarsely chopped blanched almonds
  • 2 tsps finely grated orange rind
  • ½ cup (80 g) coarsely chopped raisins
  • ¼ cup (40 g) blanched almonds, extra, toasted
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

Grease a 20 cm x 30 cm (slice pan or ovenproof dish; line base and sides with baking paper, extending paper 5 cm over short sides.


Stir sugar, the water, cloves and cinnamon stick in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil; boil, uncovered, without stirring, 5 mins. Cool 5 mins.


Meanwhile, heat butter in a large saucepan until foaming. Add semolina and chopped nuts; cook, stirring, about 8 mins or until browned lightly. Remove from heat. Carefully strain sugar syrup into semolina mixture (mixture will bubble up).


Return pan to heat, add rind and raisins; cook, stirring, about 1 min or until thick and starting to come away from the side of the pan.


Spread semolina mixture into slice pan; top with extra nuts, cool. Sprinkle with ground cinnamon before cutting.

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