Hello again! I thought it was about time I shared another recipe, because it has been OVER A YEAR since I last blogged!! How has that happened?! Time flies...! It's been a busy year though: moving to London and training to be a Speech and Language Therapist has meant that blogging has not been my top priority. Of course, those of you that know me will know that I have not stopped baking - it would take a lot for that to happen...but London life can be a little hectic and I don't seem to have a lot of free time at the moment. Not that I'm complaining...I love being busy! Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I finished for summer, so I might have a little more time to bake and blog over the next couple of months.... We'll see! I'm promising nothing...!
The cake I'm sharing with you today comes from the lovely Kate over at The Little Loaf. I can't remember when I first came across Kate's blog, but I was instantly hooked and have been following it ever since. I want to make EVERYTHING she posts and when she announced she was publishing a book full of her fabulous recipes I knew I had to buy it as soon as it came out. So I did exactly that and I would urge any other baking fans out there to do the same! It's called Homemade Memories and contains the most delicious bakes all photographed so beautifully - when I got it I didn't know where to start...! Gradually, I WILL make my way through it. So far I've made the mini milk lollies (when it was a bit more summery than today!), the nectarine upside down cake and now this divine pistachio and lime cake. Which was actually meant to be a loaf, but I improvised and used a square baking tin due to my limited equipment!! And actually, it meant it didn't need to bake for quite as long, which is always a bonus, as it means less time to wait until you get to eat what you've made!
If I make this again though, I will endeavour to buy shelled pistachios, because 65g of pistachios means A LOT of shelling and I ended up with shells and pistachios all over the kitchen and a broken nail. Not that I'm complaining...it was definitely worth it, but it was very fiddly! A wise owl has since told me though that using another shell to de-shell is the way forward, which would hopefully limit any future nail injuries!!
I was saying to a friend today, when I was younger I would have always thought that chocolate cake was my favourite, but really a cake with fruit in is a hands down winner in my eyes. Banana, carrot, blueberry, raspberry, pear...I could go on - whatever the fruit, put it in a cake and it's bound to work out! The fruit makes it extra moist and kind of makes you think you're eating something a little bit healthier (although I'm 99% certain it's not!). This cake is really a variation on the lemon drizzle - but perhaps a little more sophisticated and a little zingier (is that a word?!). Actually, I've decided in fact that this cake may have beaten the lemon drizzle. Limes seem to have a much stronger flavour than lemons and the pistachios not only add a deeper flavour, but they give it a beautiful colour too. My Grannie's lemon drizzle cake is a regular request in the Goodhand family, but if I request one any time soon, I might point her in the direction of The Little Loaf and ask her to use limes instead...!
Pistachio and Lime Cake (barely adapted from The Little Loaf's Homemade Memories)
For the Cake:
60g Shelled Pistachios
180g Self-raising Flour
175g Softened Butter
175g Caster Sugar
Finely Grated Zest of 3 Limes
3 Eggs, lightly beaten
For the Glaze:
65g Dried Apricots, roughly chopped
Juice of 3 Limes
30g Pistachios, roughly chopped
- Preheat oven to 150 degrees (fan, 170 degrees without fan).
- Grease a square baking tin and line with baking paper.
- Put the shelled nuts in a food processor and blitz to a fine powder.
- Place in bowl and stir in flour and salt.
- Cream together butter and sugar in separate bowl.
- Add lime zest and cream until pale and fluffy.
- Gradually beat in eggs with a bit of flour mixture with each addition.
- Fold in remaining flour mixture until just combined.
- Fold in the milk until it drops gently off spoon (you might not need to use it all).
- Put batter in tin and smooth top.
- Bake for 30-40 mins until risen, golden and firm to touch (a skewer inserted should come out fairly clean).
- Remove from oven and leave to cool in tin for 10 mins,
- Make syrup by combining apricots, honey and lime juice in a saucepan.
- Bring to a simmer then cook for 3-4 mins until apricots have softened and mixture is syrupy.
- Stir in pistachios.
- Transfer cake to wire rack.
- Poke holes in top (not all the way through) and pour over the warm syrup.
- Make sure pistachios and apricots are evenly distributed.
- Leave to cool and cut into 12 pieces.