Last week I made this delicious and moist pistachio cake. I have to say that chocolate and pistachio are inseparable! I mean the combination of the dark chocolate and the tasty pistachio (called ‘‘pistache” in French) is just perfect.
I had a jar of homemade pistachio paste (I will also include the recipe in that post) that was calling me in the fridge, and I wanted to bake a cake for my sister in laws’s birthdays (of course I always find good excuses to bake ahaha!). In the recipe, I advised 80-110 g pistachio paste, it will really depend on your taste you can add even more if you really want to feel the pistachio taste in the cake.
The cake is not too sweet so it can bring all the pistachio flavor to the palate. The pistachio helps the cake to remain moist for few extra days than any regular cake. I topped it with a smooth dark chocolate ganache, that I sweetened with some agave syrup (natural sweetener that can be found in most of the supermarket, usually in the organic corner). The cake cooks very well in the oven and does not have any dark crust while baking (the magic of using pistachios!).
Lats but not least, I really find that this cake is very ”cute” and photogenic! Once the ganache is made, I stored it in the fridge (or even freezer) until the texture becomes like a chocolate spread one. Therefore, you could use your imagination to decorate the top of the cake (or you could cover it all if you wish). I spread the ganache of the top of the cake evenly, and then I used the back of a teaspoon to create some curves, it gives a nice touch to the cake.
I used homemade pistachio paste (much more better than the industrial one) however if you can use an already made one (although it won’t take too much time to do your own and it’s so much more satisfying!). You can store a homemade pistachio paste in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks. I you notice a change in the color or smell, it means it’s not good anymore.
Anyway, let’s discover the recipe!
Pistachio Chocolate Ganache Cake:
Serves: 6-10 Preparation: 30 min
Cooking time: 45 min
Ingredients for the cake:
- 80g-110g of pistachio paste, to taste (recipe further below)
- 150g of flour
- 1tsp. of baking powder
- 200g of unsalted butter at room temperature
- 200g of powdered sugar
- 4 eggs
- 2tsp. of vanilla extract
Ingredients for the ganache:
- 175ml of whole liquid cream
- 140g of dark chocolate
- 50g of butter
- 1 tsp. of agave syrup (or other sweetener)
- 125g raw pistachio
- 30g almond or ground almond
- 60ml sugar
- 20ml water
- 3 drops almond extract (optional)
- 1 to 2 tbsp peanut oil or sunflower oil
Let’s start with the pistachio paste first.
- In the oven, roast the pistachios on a baking sheet at 170°C for 15 minutes. Let them cool down
- In a sauce pan, combine the sugar and water on medium heat, until it reaches 120°C (if you do not have a baking thermometer, you’ll just have to keep an eye on the bubbles and thickness of the syrup, when the syrup gets thicker with stronger bubbles, you can add in the pistachios)
- Add in the pistachios. The sugar will crystallize which is normal
- The sugar will have a sand texture, so make sure to coat evenly the pistachios with a wooden spoon (a regular spoon will get sticky with the sugar). Spread the pistachios on a parchment paper and let them cool.
- Place the pistachios, the almonds (or ground almond) and almond extract in a food processor
- Mix for about 2 minutes until you obtain a coarse mixture the add the peanut or sunflower oil. You’ll have to be patient as the paste won’t form straight away! You might need to pulse more than 2 minutes in the mixer and scrap the sides of it too to make sure the paste forms evenly.
- Mix until you obtain a thick paste
- Transfer into an air-tight container
See below the different stages of the pistachio texture
This is the consistency we want to reach!⇓
Let’s do the cake now!
- Preheat the oven to 170 ° C.
- With a hand or standing mixer, beat the butter until it becomes frothy then add the sugar, continue beating to obtain a light consistency. Add the eggs one by one, without mixing too much, then the vanilla and the pistachio paste. Finish with the dry ingredients: flour, baking powder.
- Pour into a 20cm diameter mold and bake for about 45 minutes. Cool on a rack.
- Once the cake is cold, prepare the ganache: in a saucepan, heat the cream and the agave syrup until boiling. Pour over chocolate and butter cut into pieces. Smooth well with a plunging mixer preferably and let cool in the fridge ofr few minutes in the freezer until spreadable.
- Garnish the top of the cake with ganache and decorate with some unsalted pistachios. You can either use the back of a spoon live I previously advised, of even use a piping bag, here you are free to decorate as you like!
Store in the refrigerator for a few days in an airtight container. Take out a few minutes before tasting for more flavors.
Enjoy with a cup of coffee or tea!