Wednesday, 21 April 2010

The 21st Century Housewife’s© White Chocolate and Pistachio Cake

My son is stuck in Athens at the moment due to the volcanic ash that has made flying impossible over most of northern Europe, so my mind has been pretty much concentrated on that part of the world these days. Having visited Greece myself, I particularly remember the lovely flavours in their desserts and pastries. So yesterday afternoon I decided to get creative in the kitchen and invent a cake inspired by them. As I love pistachios I decided to start with those Then I discovered some white chocolate chunks in my pantry it all just kind of evolved from there. I used rosewater as a flavouring as it is used extensively in Greek cakes and pastries, but if you can’t find it (or don’t like it), just substitute one teaspoon of vanilla. You can also use ordinary milk in place of buttermilk if you don’t have any to hand, although I do like the texture and flavour buttermilk gives the cake.

I used the same method for this cake that I use for muffins - mixing the dry ingredients and the wet ones separately and then mixing them together. You still get a lovely light cake and it makes it incredibly quick and easy to put together.

2 cups all purpose flour
¾ cup white sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
¾ cup white chocolate chips or chunks
2 eggs, beaten
⅓ cup oil
(I used sunflower oil)
1 cup buttermilk
¼ teaspoon rosewater
(It’s very strong, so don’t be tempted to use more than this!)

Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Stir in the pistachios and the white chocolate chips.

In another bowl, combine the beaten eggs, oil, buttermilk and flavouring.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold together until well mixed.

Bake in a greased and floured (or lined) 2 pound loaf tin for 40 to 50 minutes at about 350℉ or 160 to 170℃. Cool completely before slicing - in fact, if you can it is best to make this cake the day before as it slices better the next day. As you can see from the photograph, this is very nice served with strawberries and some good vanilla ice cream.

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