This is not really a great cake to make during your toddler's naptime, as it utilizes every appliance in the kitchen. Live and learn.
First, melt butter in a cake pan, then evenly distribute sugar and sliced almonds in the pan. In a food processor, pulse pistachios with flour until the nuts are finely ground. With a mortar and pestle (or, in my case, a hammer and the concrete garage floor), crush cardamom seeds. Don't worry, I put the seeds in a baggy first. It was at this point that I began to worry about presenting such an off-the-wall cake to strangers. Would I be the weird girl with bad beet and onion breath who bakes weird cakes? I shrugged it off and added the cardamom to the pistachio mixture.
In a mixer, beat butter and sugar. Add eggs, then a flour/salt/baking powder mixture, then the pistachio mixture. This is a thick batter, so you drop globs of it into the pan and then spread them out with a spoon, trying not to disturb the almonds too much.
This cake smelled amazingly warm and spicy as it baked, and I knew as soon as I turned it out onto a plate and saw those pretty brown almonds that I would love it, even if no one else did.
|You and I are going to get along just fine, Cake.|
Now that I know better, in the future I would serve it more as a breakfast or tea cake. The crumb was a little dry for dessert, but was perfect with a cup of coffee this morning. The pistachios provide more texture than flavor. The recipe calls for unsalted pistachios. I used salted anyway, because it's what I had, and I actually liked it when every now and then there would be a hit of salt in the bite. This cake is perfectly balanced--not too sweet, with exactly the right amount of cardamom.
Conclusion: Loved it. This is a new favorite.