Soooo..... I've started work! I've officially made that transition from rock-up-to-lectures-in-pyjamas (don't ever do that) to turn-up-for-work-in-a-shirt (don't get those mixed). This is Scary Stuff. And, so far, I have discovered:
1) The tube kinda smells in the morning.
2) The tube kinda smells in the evening.
3) Coffee! I love you. We shall become best friends and I promise you will always be in my life. Earl Grey, you're not too bad either.
4) Hi Microsoft Excel! We are going to come to a good understanding over the next few years.
5) Sitting around all day is actually quite tiring (no, really!). So, last weekend, I decided to go for a run. It was a nice sunny day and I was ready to run off all those cappuccinos. As I left the flat and started jogging, I felt energised, I felt motivated, I felt totally refreshed. This was great!
For the first 30 seconds. And then I got a stitch.
And then I went home.
And then I went on to do what I do best - baking! (Oh, and my job too, I hope.)
This cake was actually made by two of my best friends and I a while back (so photo credit for the photo above goes to one of them :) It has rosewater icing, chopped pistachios and a moist and fudgy centre and oh my now I'm hungry I want some cake...
You can tell that one of my friends is also Chinese because we chopped up the hazelnuts using a MASSIVE MEAT CLEAVER! Yeah, don't mess with us.
It's an Iranian cake from my 'A World of Cake' cookbook. Apparently 'Iranian cakes are influenced by the traditions of India, the Middle East and Europe'. It's clearly very multi-cultural then!
Tips when making pistachio and rosewater cake:
- Rosewater is very delicate, you may need more than the recipe states especially if you really like the taste
- When beating the egg whites, make sure the bowl is completely grease and water free
- As the book suggests, you can vary the recipe by putting in chopped apricots and almonds
And this is the instagram shot of what we made!
Sorry guys, but I'm going to have to go now. I'm off to watch Suits (haven't heard of it? Where have you been??) =) Have a good week!
From ‘A World of Cake’ by Krystina Castella
200g / 7oz / 1 ½ cups plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
225g / 8oz / 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
225g / 8oz / 1 cup granulated sugar
4 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon rosewater
1 teaspoon lime juice
6 eggs, separated
125g / 4 oz / 1 cup pistachios, toasted and chopped
300g / 11oz / 2½ cups icing sugar
2 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons rosewater
2 teaspoons lime juice
50g / ¼ chopped pistachios
To make the cake
Preheat the oven to 175C/350F. Butter a 9-inch round cake pan.
Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, cumin and allspice in a bowl and mix. In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Add the honey, rosewater, and lime juice and mix. Blend in the egg yolk. Gradually mix the flour mixture into the butter mixture, until fully incorporated.
Beat the egg whites until they hold stiff peaks. Fold the whites into the batter, followed by the chopped pistachios.
Pour the batter into the cake tin and bake for 40 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove the cake and let it cool.
To make the icing, mix the icing sugar, milk, rosewater and lime juice. When the cake is cool (and only when it’s cooled!) spread the rosewater icing over the top and sides of the cake. Sprinkle chopped pistachios around the edge and add a rose petal in the middle!