One of my favorite desserts I’ve ever made: a saffron pistachio cake with lemon zest frosting 🍋
Everything in the process of baking it, frosting it and especially taking these photos was very rewarding 📸🍰 Recipe below:
1/4 tsp saffron threads + 1/2 tbsp sugar + 1 tbsp hot water
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp Himalayan salt
4 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup whole milk
1/2 cup olive oil
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 9-inch round cake pan and set aside.
Grind saffron threads with a mortar and pestle until it becomes a fine powder. In a small bowl, mix saffron, sugar, and hot water. Let sit for 10 minutes.
In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, cardamom and salt. Set aside.
In another bowl, use a hand mixer to cream sugar and butter until light in color and fluffy in texture.
Beat in eggs for about 30 seconds. Add milk, olive oil and vanilla extract and mix until fully combined.
Fold in dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Pour into baking pan and bake on the middle rack. After 20 minutes, lightly cover the top with foil to prevent burning. Continue to cook for another 20 minutes and then remove the foil. Bake for another 5-10 min, until toothpick test comes out clean. (Total cook time, 45 min)
While the cake cools, let’s make the frosting:
With a hand mixer, combine 4 tbsp. of butter (softened) and 4 oz cream cheese. The texture should be fluffy in texture.
Beat in 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, 1/2 of lemon zested, and a pinch of salt. Do not over mix.
Fold in 2 cups of powdered sugar. Add more if you want a thicker consistency and a splash of water if you want it to be thinner.
Frost cake and top with pistachios.