Almond-Semolina Lemon Loaf

I love lemon in desserts and am a recent fan of almond flour in baking. So when I found a recipe that combines the two, I had to try it! To make it even more exciting, this is a Yottam Ottolenghi recipe! He is one of the most famous chefs for middle eastern food (my hummus recipe is also adapted from one of his).I give full credit to MasterChef Australia for introducing me to the wonders of Ottolenghi’s food (and so many other chefs too).

This loaf is much healthier than regular lemon loaves because it has almond flour and semolina, no all purpose flour. I also use olive oil, instead of butter, making it even more aromatic and a little more dense. Bring on the Mediterranean flavours, I say! 🙂

The almond flour is made from scratch by roasting almonds before blitzing them into a fine powder. Making things on your own has such a nice joy about it – you really feel like this is your creation 🥰

The semolina adds to the flavour as well as texture, making this cake very different from anything you have ever had before.

I first baked this for a friend, N, who is very health conscious and is an inspiration for focus on fitness and clean eating habits. He really liked it (thankfully) 🙂 However, I wasn’t sure if people who liked the usual dessert flavours and textures would like it as much. I baked it for a lunch at my friend L’s house and it was a huge hit! *Phew* All the dessert loving people loved this too! Victory Dance!

The cake has a nice dark crust, with a soft, dense interior. It is lemony, nutty and altogether quite delicious!

Healthy (ish) can be tasty too 🙂

I highly recommend you try this and give your palate new flavours to love!

Almond-Semolina Lemon Loaf

  • Servings: 10-12 slices
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Print


1.5 cups (135g) almonds

1/2 cup (78g) semolina (sooji/rava)

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cup olive oil

3 eggs – room temperature

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar

1 tsp lemon zest – grated

2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice


  1. Pre heat the oven to 175C for ten minutes. Spread out the almonds on a baking tray and bake for 10 mins, stirring mid way. Once done let them cool and then blitz to a fine powder. Don’t overdo it else it will become paste (some not so fine flour is ok). You need 1.5 cups of almond flour
  2. Continue to heat the oven to 175C. Grease and line a 9*5 loaf pan
  3. Sift the almond flour, semolina, salt, baking powder and lemon zest in a small bowl
  4. In a larger bowl, whisk together sugar and olive oil for 3-4 mins till well combined and light
  5. Add the eggs, one by one, mixing well after each addition
  6. Mix in the vanilla extract and lemon juice
  7. Fold in the dry ingredients (flour mix) and combine till just done
  8. Transfer to baking pan and bake at 175C for 50-60 mins till it springs back to touch and a tester comes out clean
  9. Cool to room temperature and slice!

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A baker, a dancer, a marketeer. Sometimes lazy. Always up to try new food, read interesting books and meet amazing people :)

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