Revani (Greek semolina cake)

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Danny Kingston serves up his Greek semolina cake, Revani, a recipe that he has tweaked to perfection over the years. The heady combination of honey, orange and pistachio is sure to bring a slice of Greek sunshine to your kitchen.

First published in 2015

Most traditional recipes, like this Greek semolina cake (or Revani as it is also known), are all open to interpretation, tweaks and additions and this recipe is no different. And whilst I wish I could say that I learnt to make this under the guidance of a scary Yiayia, all clad in black, I got the lowdown for this wonderfully moreish cake from another maternal figure; namely, the very reliable Delia Smith. But then again, she didn’t quite get it right the first time around because my first attempt way back when fractured under the pressure when I tried to lift it out of the tin and I was largely left with crumbs. This could be down to my own cack-handed ineptitude of course but being the stubborn, pig-headed type, I am hardly going to foot the blame. So after further cracks at the whip, I’ve made a couple of changes by adding a smidgen of breadcrumb and soupçon of oil to the mix, just to stabilise things. There be might frowns, certainly; but let me reassure you, the grainy texture and lightness of this cake, imbued with sweet honey and citrus, is by no way affected by their introduction. Yes, I am talking to you, my imaginary Greek grandmother. As for Delia, I am sure she won’t be too bothered.

(He says, flinching).




  • 1 unwaxed orange, large
  • 200g of semolina
  • 50g of white breadcrumbs, slightly stale
  • 175g of caster sugar
  • 100g of ground almonds
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 175ml of sunflower oil, plus extra for greasing
  • 3 eggs

For the honey and orange syrup

For the yoghurt and pistachio topping


First, preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6. Line the bottom of a 24cm loose-base round tin with greaseproof paper, then grease the tin
Mix together the semolina and breadcrumbs in a bowl with the sugar, almonds and baking powder. Cut the orange into small pieces, removing any pips and then put the pieces into a blender and blitz to a pulp
Whisk the oil with the eggs in another bowl, then pour into the dry ingredients and mix well. Fold in the orange pulp and then pour the mixture into the tin and place in the oven. After 10 minutes, turn the heat down to 180°C/gas mark 4 for another 40-45 minutes
Check with a skewer by inserting it into the middle - if it comes out clean, it’s done. Leave to cool for 15 minutes before turning out onto a plate
Meanwhile, whilst the cake is baking, make the spiced honey and orange syrup. Put all of the ingredients into a saucepan and bring gently to the boil, stirring until the honey has completely dissolved
Simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat. Leave the cinnamon stick and cloves in the syrup to infuse for 30 minutes, then lift them out of the syrup
While the cake is still warm, pierce it several times with a skewer then spoon the syrup over the cake, allowing it to run into the holes. If any excess syrup starts to seep out from around the cake, simply scoop up with a spoon and pour over again until everything is soaked up. Leave to cool completely
When ready to serve, lightly whip the yoghurt to loosen, then smooth it all over the top of the cake with a palette knife. Drizzle with honey and finish with a scattering of the chopped pistachio
First published in 2015

Danny is a food adventurer, home grower, supper club host and writer of the entertaining and quirky epicurean blog, Food Urchin.

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