This is a very special cake. Not for the flavors, not for its looks, but for whom it was made. My mother is visiting from India and my Dad drove in from MI, and, for the first time in decades, we celebrated my Mommy’s birthday with this cake. I make cakes for pretty much everyone who is near and dear to me, but to make a cake for my mother…….well it has by far been the greatest joy of my life thusfar !
- 1 cup cake flour
- 14 tablespoons baker’s sugar or superfine sugar, divided
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
- 3 large eggs, separated
- 6 tablespoons water
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
- 1/4 teaspoon whole cardamom seeds (removed from about 5 green cardamom pods)
- 2 1/2 cups chilled heavy whipping cream, divided
- Pinch of saffron threads
- 8oz of marscapone cheese
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2, 6 oz cups of vanilla greek yogurt
- 1 cup of ground pistachios
Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter two 8-inch-diameter cake pans with 1 1/2-inch-high sides. Line pan bottoms with parchment paper; butter parchment. Sift flour, 7 tablespoons baker’s sugar, baking powder, and salt into large bowl. Whisk yolks and next 4 ingredients in small bowl until smooth. Add yolk mixture to dry ingredients; whisk until smooth. Beat egg whites in medium bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add 7 tablespoons baker’s sugar; beat until whites resemble thick marshmallow fluff. Fold whites into batter in 3 additions. Divide batter between prepared pans. Bake until cakes are golden and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Cool in pans on racks 15 minutes. Turn out onto racks, peel off parchment, and cool completely. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Wrap and store at room temperature.)
Combine 1/2 cup cream, honey and saffron in small saucepan. Bring to simmer. Remove from heat; let steep 20 minutes. Chill until cold.
Beat remaining 2 cups cream, powdered sugar, and rose water in large bowl until soft peaks form; strain in saffron cream. Beat until peaks form.
Place 1 cake layer, flat side up, on platter. Spread greek yogurt and ground pistachios–you will have extra, save it and top your oatmeal with it. Top with second cake layer, flat side down.
Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake. Chill at least 1 hour and up to 6 hours. Garnish cake with strawberries
I love biscotti. I follow a basic biscotti recipe from Martha Stewart but I change it up every time by playing with the ratio of flour and nuts and baking morsels. This time I had dark chocolate and I bought pistachios, so the combination was pretty obvious ! They came out quite well too !
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup white sugar
¼ tsp salt
¼ cup brown sugar
8oz dark chocolate
4 Tbsp of unsalted butter
3 medium eggs
¼ cup + 1Tbsp ground pistachio
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together first four ingredients.
In a double boiler melt dark chocolate, butter and brown sugar.
Add the melted chocolate to the flour mixture.
Add the beaten eggs and mix.
Fold in ¼ cup of the ground nuts and shape into a 12-inch log.
Top the log with remaining 1Tbsp nuts.
Bake until logs are puffed and outside is firm, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, about 2 hours. While you are waiting, raise the temperature of the oven to 375F.
Using a serrated knife, thinly slice the logs crosswise, 1/4 inch thick. Lay slices cut side up on a baking sheet.
Bake until crisp, rotating pans and turning biscotti over halfway through, 20 minutes total. Cool completely before serving or storing in an air tight container.
Biscotti say hello to Sunday morning coffee !