El Fenn

Derb Moullay Abdullah Ben Hussain,
Bab El Ksour,

+212 524 44 1220
[email protected]


We’re famous for our breakfast here at El Fenn. Served on the terrace with a view of the Atlas Mountains, we always start the day in style. Here is one of your favourites from the breakfast menu. Msemen – pancakes Moroccan style.


In Morocco all good home cooks pride themselves on making their own traditional breads and pastries. Msemen is a square, laminated pastry that is cooked in a hot pan until crisp on the outside and tender in the middle. It’s the essential brunch pastry you never knew you needed and we’re delighted to be able to share our  msemen pancake recipe with you.

msemen pancake recipe - traditional moroccan breakfast



Makes about 10 msemen pancakes



  • 220g plain flour
  • 45g fine semolina
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried yeast
  • 175ml warm water (approx.)



  • 175ml vegetable oil
  • 35g semolina
  • 55g butter



  1. Mix together the flour, semolina, sugar, salt and yeast in a large bowl.
  2. Add warm water and mix to form a dough, adding more water if a bit dry, or a tiny bit more flour if sticky. You are looking for a soft, manageable ball of dough.
  3. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic. About 10 mins.
  4. Oil your hands with vegetable oil and shape the msemen dough into approx. 10 golf-ball sized balls.
  5. Place the dough balls on an oiled baking sheet, cover loosely and allow to rest for 10 minutes.


msemen recipe - preparing the dough


  1. First dip the balls into vegetable oil and then use your hands to flatten them into a very thin square. Don’t worry if the shape is not exact, or if you make small holes – it won’t matter for the finished pastry.
  2. Dot the dough with butter and sprinkle with a little semolina.
  3. Draw an imaginary line vertically separating the dough into 3 sections. Fold the left side into the middle section, then fold the right side on top of that, so you have a three-layered, single length of dough
  4. Then draw an imaginary line horizontally separating the dough into 3 sections. Fold the top over the middle section, and then fold the bottom over that. Now you have a cube of 6 layers of dough.
  5. Place the folded dough back on the baking tray, and continue until you have folded all the dough balls into squares.


Msemen panckaes, square pancakes served for breakfast with butter, jam and honey



  1. Heat a frying pan over a medium heat and while that is heating, flatten out the squares with your hands, taking care to retain the square shape, until they are about double in side.
  2. Lay them in the hot pan, working one or two at a time depending on the size of your pan, and turn frequently so that they are evenly cooked on the inside, and golden brown on the outside (approx. 5 minutes per msemen)
  3. Stack on a baking tray in a low oven, to keep warm while you make the rest
  4. Serve with butter, honey, jam or any of your other favourite toppings.

Now it’s time to enjoy – sit back, relax and imagine you are meeting your pancake creations on the terrace here at El Fenn. Don’t forget to tag #elfenn in your msemen creations on instagram.



To find out more about our food and drink at El Fenn, take a look at our restaurant page.


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