St. Patrick’s day home-baked treat, anyone? This is lovely and moist and soaked in rosewater and lemon syrup. Make it at least 2 hours before you want to serve it so the syrup has time to soak in. You can buy unsalted shelled pistachios in Middle Eastern and Asian Stores. The recipe, adapted by me to be healthier, is from Claudia Roden’s Arabesque. I am including 2 sizes of cake so you don’t have to go with enormous all the time, if you don’t have 12 people to serve. I increased the amount of lemon, to give a little more tang, and switched the immuno-suppressing sugar for xylitol/erythritol (from health shops). If you want to make serving this more spectacular, get yourself some rosepetals/rosebuds from a Middle Eastern shop and crumble some of the rose petals around and on top of each slice.
To serve 6
3 eggs, seperated
60g xylitol or erythritol
25g coarsely chopped raw unsalted pistachios (optional)
100g pistachio flour (finely ground raw unsalted pistachios)
1 x 10-13cm round loose-bottomed cake tin
Syrup for small cake:
1 tbs lemon juice
1 tbs rosewater
To serve (optional):
125ml Abbot Kinney’s/Coyo non dairy coconut yoghurt or whipped cream (I like to mix in a few drops of water to either)
Large cake (to serve 12)
5 eggs, seperated
50g coarsely chopped raw unsalted pistachios (optional)
200g pistachio flour (finely ground raw unsalted pistachios)
1 x 23-25 cm round loose-bottomed cake tin
Syrup for large cake:
2 tbs lemon juice
2 tbs rosewater
To serve (optional):
250ml Abbot Kinney’s/Coyo non dairy coconut yoghurt or whipped cream (I like to mix in a few drops of rosewater to either)
1. Make the syrup. Bring the xylitol/erythritol, water and lemon juice to the boil, simmer till everything is dissolved. Stir in the rosewater.
2. Let the syrup cool, then chill it.
3. Beat the egg yolks with the xylitol/erythritol to a pale cream, then add the ground pistachios and mix very well. Beat the egg whites until still and fold in gently. Pour into a greased cake tin and sprinkle the coarsely chopped pistachios, if using, on top.
4. Bake in pre-heated oven (180C/fan 165C).
Test for done-ness (where needle or point of knife comes out clean) after 35 minutes for the small cake and 40 minutes for the large, which should take around 45 minutes. If the cake is still sticky, give another 5 minutes, then test again.
5. Turn the cake onto a deep serving dish. Make little holes over the top with a fork and pour over the syrup. The holes will let it soak in quickly.
6. Serve, if you like, with the coconut yoghurt or cream.
Why this is better for you:
OK, so raw nuts are much better than baked (because nut/seed oils get damaged by heat) but this cake is high in protein and contains no sugar. This means it won’t disrupt blood sugar levels. Maintaining blood sugar balance is important if you care about your vitality and health. Erratic blood sugar levels contribute to fatigue, mood issues, inflammation, auto-immune conditions and so, so much more. Stay well.