These mini cakes are delightful with a classic pairing of lemon and pistachio, and a hint of rose to round out the flavour. The roasted pistachios and almond meal provide a lovely crumb, and make these cakes suitable for those with gluten intolerance. The grapefruit glaze is deliciously tangy with slightly bitter notes, but you can substitute the grapefruit juice for lemon juice if preferred.
(1) If you don’t have a heart-shaped pan, you can easily use a standard muffin pan instead, and serve them upside-down, glazing the flat base. If using a standard muffin pan, this amount of batter should produce approx. 10-12 cakes.
(2) If rosewater doesn’t take your fancy, it can be omitted and these little cakes will still taste divine.
Lemon Rose Pistachio Cakes + Grapefruit Glaze (gf)
Makes eight mini (6cm wide x 3cm deep) heart shaped cakes
Serves 8 people
Lemon Rose Pistachio Cakes
50g shelled, unsalted pistachios
100g almond meal
¾ tsp baking powder
100g unsalted butter, softened
100g caster sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1-2 tsp rosewater
160g (1 cup) icing sugar mixture, sifted
2 tbsp (40ml) pink grapefruit juice (approx. juice of 1/2 grapefruit)
Small handful slivered pistachios
Dried rose petals
Lemon Rose Pistachio Cakes
(1) Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced) and lightly grease an eight-hole mini heart-shaped pan with oil or melted butter.
(2) Place pistachios on a baking tray and roast for 3-5mins or until fragrant, taking care not to burn.
(3) Allow pistachios to cool, then process finely. Mix together with almond meal and baking powder and set aside.
(4) Beat butter, sugar and lemon zest in a free-standing mixer with paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Continue to beat while adding half the dry ingredients, then one egg, then the remainder of dry ingredients and second egg. Beat until well combined, then add rose water.
(5) Divide equally between pan holes, then bake for 18-20 minutes or until a skewer comes out with moist crumbs. Turn cakes out onto a wire rack then allow to cool completely before glazing.
(1) Combine grapefruit juice and icing sugar, mixing until well combined and the glaze has a pouring consistency. It should be fluid but still quite thick. If glaze is too thin or thick, add a bit more icing sugar or grapefruit juice respectively.
(1) Drizzle cakes with grapefruit glaze, then sprinkle with rose petals and pistachios.
Credits and Sources
Cake recipe adapted from Nigella Lawson’s Lemon Polenta Cake
Scalloped cake stand by Anna Wallace Ceramics
Ceramic mini pitcher by Grit Ceramics
Ceramic nesting bowls by Antler and Moss
Table linens by Red House VT
Wooden cake server by Hope in the Woods
Hello, this is such a beautiful bake! I was wondering if you leave the pistachio shells on?? And if you do isn’t it difficult to finely grind them in the processor?
Thanks for your query and delighted to hear you like this cake. The pistachios should be shelled and unsalted. I usually purchase them as raw, shelled unsalted pistachios then roast them for 3-5 minutes until fragrant, allow them to cool then finely process them to a texture similar to almond meal. Hope this helps and happy baking!
Kind regards, Salma
Such a lovely recipe! Can I substitute anything else for the eggs?
Thanks so much for the query. Unfortunately, the eggs are vital in this particular recipe. They provide a leavening and binding capacity, especially as there is no flour in this gluten-free recipe. I also don’t have many other egg-free recipes to suggest for you I’m sorry!