The story behind this classic pistachio-rose confection tells of a Persian woman who wanted to make a prince fall in love with her, so she created a cake laced with a love spell, and thus, this delicate, mesmerizing bake was born. Get the veganized version in this recipe from The Vegan Cake Bible cookbook.
What you need:
½ cup vegan butter
¾ cup superfine sugar
¼ cup rosewater, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1 teaspoon lemon extract
Zest of 1 lemon
⅓ cup plain soy milk
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1⅓ cups all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon xanthan gum
1 tablespoon ground cardamom
½ cup almond flour
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Chopped pistachios and dried rose petals, for garnish
What you do:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and line a 8-inch springform cake pan with parchment paper, then grease again and dust with flour, tipping to dump out excess.
- In a heat-proof bowl, melt butter in the microwave in 15-second intervals, stirring in between.
- To a small bowl, transfer melted butter, add sugar, and whisk until sugar is dissolved. Add 3 tablespoons of rosewater, vanilla bean paste, lemon extract, and lemon zest, and stir until completely combined.
- In a separate small bowl, stir soy milk and vinegar until mixture thickens, then add to melted butter mixture, stirring to combine.
- Into a large mixing bowl, sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, xanthan gum, and ground cardamom, then stir in almond flour.
- Make a well in center of dry ingredients. Pour in wet mixture and stir until just combined.
- Into prepared cake pan, pour batter, then transfer to middle rack of oven and bake for 35 minutes, or until golden brown and top springs back when gently pressed.
- Allow cake to cool in pan for at least 15 minutes, then turn onto a cake rack to cool completely.
- Into a small bowl, place powdered sugar, lemon juice, and remaining 1 tablespoon of rosewater and stir until combined.
- Pour glaze over cooled cake and decorate with pistachios and dried rose petals.
Photo credit: Sara Kidd