Revani is the name of this Albanian dessert, and itis simply delicious. I chose to make it for its use of corn meal, as ground corn is a main food source in the northern region of Albania. They use if for baking bread and various types of sweets like this wonderful cake called Revani. It gets its moistness from the syrup, which most of their desserts feature and is a clear Ottoman influence.
Did you know that in the evenings in Albania you will likely see something called Xhiro. This is when the locals go out for a walk after dinner to burn off their excesses, like this Revani for example. It is a way to connect with the neighbors. In some traditional towns they actually close off the streets to vehicular traffic until people are finished walking and talking. A lovely way to end the day.
If you would like to learn more about Albania be sure to check out "Our Journey to Albania". There you will also find more authentic recipes as well.
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Revani – Albanian Cake
- For the Syrup:
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 ¾ cups water
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- For the Cake:
- 4 eggs
- ¾ cup plain yogurt
- ¾ cup olive oil
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ¾ cups corn meal or semolina
- 3 tablespoons baking powder
- ½ cup pistachios crushed for garnish
- ¼ cup powdered sugar for garnish
- Fresh mint leaves for garnish
- 1 lemon sliced for garnish
- Make the syrup first so it has time to cool.
- Bring to boil the sugar and water, stirring often, boil for approx. 10-15 minutes but watch it close, as soon as it starts to get thick take it off the burner and add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Let cool.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- In a bowl, mix the eggs, yogurt, oil and sugar together.
- Add in dry ingredients until well blended.
- Pour into 9x12 greased pan.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
- Cut into diamond shapes or squares.
- Pour the syrup over the cake.
- Garnish with pistachios, powdered sugar and twisted lemon slices.