Tamina: Algerian Semolina Honey Dessert

Tamina is also known as “Bsisa” is famous as a popular dessert in the country that is prepared with morning breakfast which consists of milk and bread.

Algerians prepare this recipe by roasting semolina which is then added to couscous and some flour. Such an easy recipe!

What is Tamina?

Tamina (الطمينة) is a simple Algerian dessert mainly made of semolina. It is usually served during celebrations such as engagement parties, weddings, baby showers, or Mawlid.

It is an ultra semolina sweet that’s made from toasted semolina, fragrant orange blossom honey, and fresh butter.

Tamina Recipe

This dessert is also served on Mouloud, the celebratory birthday of our Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) as the 3 main ingredients represent semolina: sustenance, honey: the sweetness of love for each other, and the butter: rich blessings from our Creator.

The traditional recipe is made with fresh butter and honey, but due to economical reasons many have replaced butter with margarine and honey with sugar syrup.

This dish is prepared in large quantities at the birth of a child, as offering it to guests is an Algerian way of saying ‘we have a newborn child, please celebrate with us’.

Mothers and mother-n-laws of the new mother lovingly toasted vast amounts of semolina, in preparation for the massive crowds that will arrive to see the baby.

Toasted semolina can stay for months, and be thrown together last minute for when last-minute, unexpected guests pop up.

Recipe Variation

There are 4 different recipe from different regions of Algeria. Tamina el Ghars also called “Maakra” (in the South) “R’fiss Tmar” and in the Oran region, “Kaabouche” is a recipe version that uses toasted semolina, dates, and butter.

Halwa smid or Tamina Beïda translated as “white Tamina”  is prepared in the eastern region of Algeria and is based on lightly toasted semolina giving its white color, Tamina Allouez is prepared in Constatine.

This preparation uses ground almonds, rose water, milk and honey. And finally, the well-known preparation that is made from Algiers to Chlef, Tamina h’rour.

Traditionally h’rour is a spice mixture that consists of cinnamon, ginger, galangal, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves was used.

Modern cooks have replaced it with cinnamon and even other flavorings such as helva turc, coconut, and almonds.

Be Sure to Try These Other Authentic Algerian dishes!

Algerian Toasted Semolina with Butter and Honey – Tamina

The Algerian toasted semolina with butter and Honey called Tamina is a dessert usually prepared for the celebration of the the prophet Mohamed’s birthday (or Al Mawlid Anabawi Acharif) in the Algerian culture. Tamina is also prepared for the mothers who had babies and it is served for their guests for the same occasion. Tamina requires 3 basic ingredients such as 1 measurement toasted semolina, 1/2 measurement butter, 1/2 measurement honey. The decoration is optional, it can be cinnamon, nuts, and you name it.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine Algerian
Servings 4


  • 1 cup medium semolina
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup butter at room temperature
  • Cinnamon
  • Nuts M&M’s or any other type of candies (optional).


  • First, place a cheesecloth in the top of a steamer.
  • Pour semolina on the cheesecloth.
  • Place the top of the steamer with semolina on a pot of boiling water.
  • Let the semolina steam for about 15 minutes.
  • Pour the steamed semolina in a large shallow dish and let cool.
  • Pour the steamed semolina in a large frying pan, over medium low heat.
  • Toast semolina until it gets that golden color. Set aside.
  • Place butter in a saucepan over medium heat and let it melt.
  • Add honey to the butter and let it just warm up ( not boil).
  • Turn off the heat.
  • Pour toasted semolina and mix it well.
  • Let set for about 5 minutes.
  • You will notice butter on top, mix it again and pour it in a serving plate.
  • Take a cookie cutter of your choice and dip it in the Tamina, then place the cookie cutter in another plate containing cinnamon.
  • Stamp the Tamina with the cookie cutter (with cinnamon).
  • Decorate with nuts, candies or anything you like (optional).


Several recipes don’t require the steaming of semolina but I recommend doing it for safety ( in case the semolina is not well toasted but it was steamed, it’s safe to eat it).
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Blessing Funmilayo Ogunsanya
Hello, my name is Funmilayo, and i love to write about food, beauty, fashion and wellness. So welcome to my Food world! I share histories, discoveries, uniqueness, tips, and tricks on different dishes .Come let's take this adventure together. I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I do and hope to see you back here again soon.

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