Friday, October 3, 2014

Pistachio Cardamom Cake with Rosewater Frosting


This week, my blogger friend All Floured Up and I are doing an Eid Menu Swap! To complete the menu, today, we'll be posting some dessert ideas. I've decided to share the recipe for this beautiful cake, pistachio cardamom cake with rosewater frosting. Read more about the menu swap and find the rest of the recipes here.



Pistachio, cardamom, and rosewater are all very popular flavors in Indian and Pakistani cuisine. In fact, they're also very popular in Middle Eastern cuisines which makes this cake very appropriate for Eid. Combined, Southeast Asia and the Middle East have more than 80% of the world's Muslim population! My point is, this uniquely flavored cake will appeal to a lot of tastebuds.


When you start making this cakes, you'll start to smell the aromatic scent of cardamom. When you bake the cake, the pistachio and cardamom together smell so lovely. You have to try it to understand! On to the recipe!


Pistachio Cardamom Cake
(Adapted from Food52)
(makes 8" cake)

1/2 cup shelled raw pistachios
1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom (use 1/4 teaspoon if using freshly ground cardamom)
tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
cup granulated sugar
large egg, room temperature
cup milk, room temperature
teaspoon vanilla extract

Heat your oven to 350° F and put the rack in the middle. Grease and flour 2 8" cake pans.



Put the pistachios in a mini chopper and pulse until very finely ground. Set aside 2 tablespoons for topping the cupcakes.




Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, and cardamom into a medium bowl.




Add the butter and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and cream on medium speed until very light and fluffy, about three minutes.




Add the egg, and beat on medium speed until the mixture is uniformly smooth, about 30 seconds.




Add half of the flour mixture. Mix on low speed until just combined. 
Add the milk and vanilla extract and mix on medium-low speed until the mixture is uniformly smooth, about 15 seconds. Add the remaining flour mixture. Mix on low speed until barely combined - it's ok if there is still some flour on the sides of the bowl.



Remove the bowl from the mixer. Add the ground pistachios (except for the reserved 2 tablespoons) and mix gently to combine.




Divide the batter into the two cake pans. Bake until the tops spring back lightly when pressed and a toothpick comes out clean, about 22-25 minutes. 
Cool the cakes in the pan for 20 minutes, then flip them out onto a rack to cool completely.

Rosewater Swiss Meringue Frosting
(makes about 6 cups)

large egg whites
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
4 sticks unsalted butter, slightly cooler than room temperature
teaspoon rose water (kewra water)
drop pink food coloring (optional)



Bring 1-2" of water to a simmer in a saucepan that is wide enough for the bowl of your mixer to sit on top of it (but not so big that the bowl falls in).




Add the egg whites and sugar to the mixer bowl. Whisk well to combine, then place over the pot of simmering water. Whisk constantly until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is opaque and thick, about 3 minutes.




Transfer the bowl to the mixer and attach the whisk attachment. Start on low speed and over the course of 30 seconds, bring the speed up to high. Whip on high speed until the whites are thick and glossy and the bowl is cool to the touch, about 7 minutes.




While the whites are whipping, cut the butter into tablespoon-sized chunks. It's important that the butter is not too warm, so if it's squishy, put it in the fridge for a while so that it's somewhat firm but still pliant.


When the whites are cool, scrape down the sides of the bowl and lower the speed to 8. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter and whip until combined, about 10 seconds. Continue with the remaining butter, waiting 10 seconds between each addition.


When all the butter has been added, turn the speed to high and whip until the mixture comes together to form a thick frosting. After the frosting comes together, continue to mix on medium-high speed for another minute.




Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then add the rosewater and pink food coloring (if using) and whip on high speed for 10 seconds to combine.


Frost the cake and keep it boxed in the fridge until you need it. Bring it to room temperature by taking it out half an hour before serving.

Enjoy!





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