Pistachio Cake with Mascarpone and Passion Fruit - Recipe

A forgotten packet of pistachios fell onto my head when I was rooting around for something in the cupboard the other day. This is literally the reason why I decided to make a pistachio cake this week.

This is a pretty easy recipe, and you could even forgo separating the eggs and just whisking everything together... but then you wouldn't get the pillowy-soft texture that comes with folding meringue-i-fied egg whites into the batter before baking. I'll leave it up to you (but I'll strongly advise making the tiny extra effort to separate the eggs).

Ready? Let's go.


85g unsalted butter, softened
150g caster sugar
4 large eggs, separated
1 tbsp condensed milk
50g self raising flour
100g pistachios, ground
Pinch of salt

For the Coulis:

4 passion fruits
2 tbsp icing sugar
For the Topping:
100g mascarpone
150ml double cream
2 tbsp icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla

To Garnish:

Slivered pistachios
Fresh rose petals


1) Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease and line an 8" round cake pan.

2) In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites until they form stiff white peaks, and then whisk in half of the caster sugar until glossy.

3) Cream the butter and the rest of the sugar together until fluffy and pale, then beat in the egg yolks, condensed milk, salt and pistachio flavouring.

4) Fold the egg whites carefully into the butter mixture, taking care not to overwork. Then sift in the flour and ground pistachios and gently fold until just combined.

5) Pour the mixture into the pan, smooth it out and bake for 35 minutes, or until a skewer poked into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool.

6) Meanwhile, make the coulis by simply stirring the sugar into the passion fruit pulp and simmering in a small saucepan for 3 minutes. Leave to cool completely before using.

7) To make the topping, whisk all the ingredients together until fluffy and spreadable.

8) When the cake and coulis are cool, turn the cake out onto a plate, spread the mascarpone cream on top and drizzle over the passion fruit coulis. Sprinkle over some pistachio slivers, toss on a few rose petals and serve.

I was going to crystallise the rise petals, but I decided that they'd look a lot better fresh in this case. Besides, the moisture from the coulis would have made them lose their crispness if I had crystallised them. In any case, they're just for decoration, more than anything.

Enjoy and have fun!


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