Pistachio Rosewater Cake with Labneh Frosting from Yogurt and a Fall Paris Workshop

pistachio rosewater cake from Yogurt

Please excuse the phone photography here. I baked this pistachio rosewater cake for fun (imagine that) but so many folks over on instagram were interested in the recipe so I am sharing it - along with a very exciting announcement!

Olaiya and I had such a long waitlist for our Paris workshop this Spring (thank you!) that we added another workshop this September 20-24. The format will be pretty much the same as the Spring version - think lots of pastry, delicious wine and cheese, market visits, prop shopping, and some solid photo, styling, and editing lessons in the city of light. This trip is for anyone looking to build their photography and styling skills (all levels welcome) and enjoy lots of beautiful food in one of the most amazing cities in the world. I am so excited to explore Paris in the fall, I am dreaming of the markets already! 



Now for the cake! This comes from Molly's Shortstack all about Yogurt. It is full of sweet and savory recipes using her (and my) favorite dairy product. I grew up eating yogurt as a mostly savory food, but it is awesome in all sorts of sweet preparations too - like cake. Molly uses Labneh, a very thick and tangy type of yogurt as frosting for this pleasantly rustic, but also kinda fancy pistachio cake. If you aren't a fan of rosewater, the cake would be just as good without it too.

Pistachio Rosewater Cake with Labneh Frosting

from Yogurt by Molly Yeh

makes one 9-inch cake

This cake is so simple and tasty, and super beautiful too! I reduced the sugar in the cake and frosting by about 1/3 to suit my personal tastes, and added some strawberries on top because strawberries, pistachio, and rose are a natural paring. Did you know strawberries and roses are in the same botanical family?! The recipe below is as it is printed in the book and when I made it I used 1 cup of sugar in the cake and 2/3 cup sugar in the frosting. 

Cake

1 1/2 cups roasted unsalted shelled pistachios

3/4 cup all purpose flour

1/2 cup almond meal

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup unsalted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups sugar

4 large eggs

zest of 1 lemon

1 teaspoon almond extract

2 tablespoons rosewater

Labneh Frosting

1 1/2 cups labneh

1 cup confectioners sugar

1 tablespoon rosewater

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

pinch kosher salt

Make the cake: Preheat the oven 350ΒΊ. Grease the bottom of a 9-inch round cake pan with butter and line the bottom with parchment paper, set aside. Place the pistachios in a food processor and pulse until they’re coarsely chopped. Scoop out 2 tablespoons and set them aside for the topping. Blend the remaining pistachios until they’re finely ground. add the flour, almond meal and salt and pulse a few times to combine.

In a stand mixer fixed with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each, then add the lemon zest, almond extract and rosewater. Add the dry mixture ad mix until just combined. Pour the batter into the pan and use a spatula to smooth the top. Bake the cake until the top is golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (begin checking for doneness at 50 minutes). Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn it onto a wire rack to cool completely. 

Make the labneh frosting: In a medium bowl, stir together the labneh, sugar, rosewater, vanilla, and salt until the mixture is smooth. Cover the top of the cooled cake with the frosting. Top with the reserved pistachios and a few sprinkles of dried rose petals.

Grapefruit Olive Oil Cake

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I dusted off the ol film camera a few weeks ago and got to shooting film again. It's a nice change of pace for me, to take the time to shoot analog, to have take my film to the lab and wait to see what comes out. My camera is old and fussy, I've finally come to terms with the fact that the light meter is broken, but I am stubborn so I haven't taken it in to be repaired...I like the break from the immediacy of social media. I like that I can't (or just don't) take 20 frames of the same thing. My lab is also right next to Superiority Burger so it's a pretty good excuse to swing through for a veggie burger and Arnold Palmer.

Sure, there is some dust on the scans and the photos aren't perfect, but I love them anyway so I am posting them here along with a recipe for a super simple olive oil loaf cake that is the sort of cake that gets better with age. We enjoyed it over the course of about a week, thin slice by thin slice, and I think it really peaked in flavor on about day three. Feel free to sub lemon or lime for the grapefruit - Meyer lemon would, of course, be delicious and if you are feeling lazy, you don't really have to make the glaze. Although, I'm a sucker for citrus glaze so I'd never skip it. The candied grapefruit peel is very optional though.


Some announcements! 

There are only TWO spots left for my food and photography workshop in PARIS with Olaiya Land - who inspired this cake - We are going to have so much fun, eat so much delicious food, and learn so much about photography and editing. You will walk away from the workshop with a full heart and belly, and the skills to take your blog, social media accounts, or casual photography to the NEXT LEVEL. Please join us! 

World class food stylist and author Susan Spungen and I are teaming up for another workshop in the Hamptons this JUNE all about STRAWBERRIES! It will be open for registration next week. Make sure you are signed up for my newsletter (over in the sidebar) to get early access to registration. 


Grapefruit Olive Oil Cake

Makes one 9x5x3 or 10x4x3-inch loaf

Cake

1 cup (200g) sugar

1 3/4 cups (225g) all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

3/4  teaspoon kosher salt

3/4 cup (175ml) fruity olive oil

1/4 cup (55g) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 teaspoon finely grated grapefruit zest

4 large eggs, at room temperature

1 cup (240ml) whole-milk kefir or buttermilk, at room temperature

Glaze

2 cups confectioners sugar

2-3 tablespoons grapefruit juice

candied grapefruit peel to garnish 

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350ΒΊF butter and flour a 9x5x3 or 10x4x3 inch baking pan. 

Combine the sugar, and zest and rub the zest into the sugar until well combined and fragrant. Add the olive oil, eggs, and melted butter and whisk. Add the buttermilk or kefir. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir to combine. You want it to be well mixed, don't go crazy, a few small lumps of flour are ok. 

Pour the batter into the prepared pan, tap it gently on the counter to release any air bubbles, and bake until the cake is puffed and golden and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan on a rack for 20 minutes, then remove the cake from the pan to cool completely.

When the cake is cool, make the glaze. Whisk the confectioners sugar with grapefruit juice, adding a bit at a time until the glaze is thick but pourable. Pour the glaze over the top and garnish with candied grapefruit peel if desired. Let the glaze set for a few minutes before slicing.