300 grams semolinalightly toasted
125 grams Butter
400 grams Sugar
1/4 cup crystallised pumpkinavailable at Sri Lankan grocers
80 grams honey
185 grams cashewscrushed
40 millilitres rosewater
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2-3 Limezest only
The traditional Sri Lankan love cake dates back to the 15th century when the Portuguese controlled large parts of the island. The cake is a nutty, a bit spicy, with lots of flavors and essences.
According to the legend the Portuguese brought with them on Sri Lanka a cake named ‘Bolo di Amor’ which translates to ‘coarse cakes of love’. The cake was a huge success.
Sri Lankans created their own version of the cake combining the European flavors of citrus with cashews, spices and essences of the island. It was dubbed a ‘love cake’ as according to the legend it was made by ladies looking to win the hearts of future husbands.
How to Make the Sri Lankan Love Cake
- Preheat oven to 200°C.
- Place the semolina and butter in a tray.
- Place in an oven until the butter has melted.
- Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks in a large bowl.
- Add the sugar and mix until combined.
- Stir in the crystallized pumpkin.
- Stir in the honey and cashews.
- Add the rosewater and stir to combine.
- Add the nutmeg and cinnamon and stir until the mixture is pale.
- In a clean dry bowl, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.
- Fold the egg whites into the cake mixture.
- Stir in the lime zest.
- Add the semolina-butter mixture to the cake mixture.
- Pour into a tray lined with baking paper.
- Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour or until firm to touch.
- Remove from oven and set aside to cool slightly.
- Dust with icing sugar and cut into slices to serve.
Learn more about the cuisine of Sri Lanka, by checking out our roundup of the most popular Sri Lankan foods.