Pistachio and Cardamom Cake

By Fongolicious - March 11, 2017

I have this habit, some would call it a vice, of buying recipe books and probably never cook anything from it and it sits nice and pretty on a bookshelf. On a recent walk past this bookshelf, i decided to read a cupcake recipe book. A book don't recall making anything from but it had pages so neatly tabbed. Hmm what did past-me like so much in this book she had to tab them. It was with good reason I tabbed those pages. There was a number of interesting sounding recipes with unique flavour combinations - this one in particular - Pistachio and Cardamom! 

It must be fate I came across this as I had all the ingredients on hand. This will make for a good dessert after a dinner of curry! And indeed it did. I decided to turn this recipe into a cake, rather than cupcakes. It just meant altering the cooking time. Admittedly - this cake is nicer a day or two after it's been made, it will be going in the regular rotation! It reminds me of barfi (an Indian sweet) that I grew up with in Fiji, especially when I opened the lid of the blender! YUM!!!

I didn't following the recipe's "suggestion" to serve with a honey yogurt topping but you're welcome to mix 250g (1 cup) of plain yogurt with 1 tablespoon with honey. I also added turmeric for some colour and vanilla essence and cinnamon powder for flavour.

140g (1 cup) pistachio kernels
1/2 tspn ground cardamom (I slipped a bit when I tried to measure out half a teaspoon, so it's closer to 3/4 to 1 tspn)
150g butter, chopped
185g (1&1/2 cups) self-raising flour
170g (3/4) caster sugar - I cut this down to half a cup (125g)
1/2 tspn turmeric
1/4 tspn cinnamon
1/2 tspn vanilla essence
3 eggs
125g plain yoghurt

Syrup / Glaze
115g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
100ml water 
rind of 1 lime (grated)

1. Preheat oven to 170C. Line sides and base of a 8 inch / 20cm round cake pan (spring form works well). 

2. Place pistachios and cardamom in a food processor and pulse until chopped and resembles large crumbs. Add butter, flour, sugar, turmeric, cinnamon and process until crumbly (finer crumbs), scrap down sides with spatula if necessary. 

3. Add eggs, vanilla and yoghurt and continue to process until all is combined and resembles a runny cake batter.

4. Pour mixture into prepared cake tin and bake in preheated oven for 30 to 45 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the centre of the cake. Remove from oven and allow to stand for 10 minutes. Turn cake out and place on serving plate. Poke some holes in the top with skewer/tooth pick to allow syrup to be absorbed by the cake. 

5. While cake is baking, make syrup/glaze but DO NOT over boil this - the syrup will go hard! In a small pot, over low heat place water and sugar. until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to boil and add lime rind and simmer for 5 minutes. Drizzle or brush syrup over warm cake. Decorate cake with a sprinkle of ground cardamom (and honey yoghurt).

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