i decided to make this cake with valentines day in mind.
have you heard the tale behind the Persian love cake? well it goes a bit like this, a woman was desperately in love with a prince and she made him this cake to make him fall in love with her
there seems to be two versions of this cake one a almond meal based cake with pistachios and spice and one a chiffon style sponge cake with cardamom and whipped rose cream.
i am not sure which is the true cake but i think that the almond meal one is most typical of Persia.
in order not to offend any one i took my favourite elements from both cakes and added them into one minus the cream. Almond meal is quite pricy to i used half almond half semolina.
i have already found my prince (or lobster as i call him) but i love the story behind this cake its so romantic.
1 cup 250ml yogurt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup 220g caster sugar
1 1/4 cups 150g ground almonds
6 cardamom pods
2 tbsp rosewater
6 tbsp chopped pistachios
pinch of saffron strands
50 ml almond milk (or whole milk)
zest from a lemon or orange
Pre heat oven to 180c 350f
peel the cardamon pods open and remove seeds, crush with a pestle and mortar.
in a cup add the saffron strands to the milk and warm in the microwave.
in another bowl beat the eggs and sugar until thick and creamy for approx. 5 to 8 minutes (I used a stand mixer and whipped until the eggs had whipped up and tripled in size) then gently fold in the yogurt
and then fold in the ground almonds, semolina and baking powder trying not to knock too much air out. then add the ground cardamom, orange or lemon zest and chopped pistachios, add the rosewater to the milk and saffron mixture and stir into the cake batter and pour into a deep lined tin ( 9 inch) or a smaller tin will make it have more hight
bake for about 45 minutes.
while it is cooking make a syrup
juice of 1 orange or lemon
zest of 1 orange or lemon
1/2 cup 125ml water
1/2 cup 125g caster sugar
2 tbsp rosewater
add all ingredients into a pan and simmer until thickened. (approx 5 minutes)
brush onto warm cake.
decorate the cake with chopped pistachios and rose petals.
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