Make an indulgent saffron, almond and pistachio cake

·2-min read
Photo credit: Alexandra Dudley
Photo credit: Alexandra Dudley

A wonderfully decadent cake, this is something I will serve both as an afternoon tea or as a pudding. Luminous saffron marries beautifully with zesty orange and lemon and brings a unique flavour to this cake. I do recommend buying your almonds whole and whizzing them in your food processor at home. The uneven texture gives the cake a wonderful crumble and releases lots of flavour from the natural oil of the almonds, too. Enjoy it just as it is or with a spoonful of crème fraîche.


Ingredients

200g unsalted butter, softened

250g golden caster sugar

Zest of 1 orange

A pinch of saffron steeped in 2tbsp hot water

4 large eggs

200g blanched almonds

50g pistachios, roughly chopped

100g plain flour

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

For the topping:

60g caster sugar

Juice and zest of one lemon

Zest of one orange

50g pistachios, roughly chopped

Method

Preheat your oven to 170°c fan setting and line a 2lb loaf tin with baking parchment.

Place the blanched almonds into a food processor and whizz until you have a rough ground texture similar to bread crumbs. Set aside.

In a large bowl beat your butter and caster sugar until light and fluffy using an electric whisk.

Add the orange zest and the saffron steeped water and beat again.

Next, add the eggs two at a time and beat until combined.

Then add the flour, baking powder and blanched almonds and fold gently with a wooden spoon or spatula to combine. Then fold in the chopped pistachios.

Pour into your prepared tin and level with a spatula.

Bake for 50 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick or skewer into the cake and remove it clean.

Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes before turning it out onto a wire rack.

As the cake cools, make the topping. Place the caster sugar, lemon zest and juice and orange zest into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Stir in the chopped pistachios and spoon over the cake. Allow the cake to cool for at least another 20 minutes. It is delicious slightly warm with crème fraîche or completely cool.

Photo credit: Alexandra Dudley
Photo credit: Alexandra Dudley