Friday, 12 October 2012

Plum, Pistachio and Cardamom Cake

Today at work we had a "cake bake" to raise money for a local charity. Staff brought in their best efforts and we all bought those sweet treats which tickled our fancies! I was a little daunted by this, mainly because Liz was not here to help me. I am not much of a baker, and it is usually Liz who rules the roost when it comes to cakes. I decided to give it a go though. I decided to stick to a simple cake recipe but spruce it up with an interesting flavour combination. I hoped that the flavour would then cover up any flaws in my baking technique! I started with the idea of using cardamom. This is mainly due to the amazing flavour it gave in Liz's blueberry tart. I then wanted to use a seasonal fruit and I chose plums for their combination of sweet and sour. To add a richness to the cake I then opted to add pistachio. So here it is, my "Plum, Pistachio and Cardamom Cake". (Just to let you know, this was the first cake to completely sell out at work.)

Nothing technical here, just a simple cake batter mixed with the key flavourings and then baked. A couple of tips though; make sure the butter and sugar are mixed until pale and fluffy before continuing. Also, if the top of the cake looks to be burning before the middle is cooked then cut a piece of greaseproof paper, scrunch it into a ball, run under water and then lie over the top of the cake. This may be necessary with this bake.


230g self raising flour
230g butter
230g caster sugar
4 eggs
100g pistachios
8 plums
15 cardamom pods


1. Preheat the oven to 180C.

2. Beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. (The butter will need to be soft before starting this)

3. Add the eggs, one at a time making sure they are thoroughly mixed in before adding the next.

4. Sift the flour into the mix and stir thoroughly to make a smooth batter.

5. Grind all but a few (save for a garnish) of the pistachios using a food processor until they are in a fine powder. Then add these to the mix.

6. Finally, quarter the plums and gently stir these into the mixture.

7. Pour the mixture into a greased tin (the one I used was about 10inch diameter), sprinkle over the reserved pistachios and bake in the oven. It could take upto 50mins.


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