Source: Pistachio and lemon cake – and more: Nigel Slater’s fruit and nut bakes

Pistachio and Lemon Cake

Course Dessert
Cuisine Middle Eastern
Keyword Cake, Lemon, Pistachio, Rosewater
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Servings 10 people


  • 250 g butter
  • 250 g caster sugar
  • 100 g pistachios shelled
  • 1 lemon
  • 3 eggs
  • 100 g ground almonds
  • 1 tsp rosewater
  • 75 g flour


  • 150 g icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp pistachios chopped


  • Preheat the oven to 150C fan/gas mark 3-4. Line a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin with baking parchment.
  • Cream the butter and sugar in a food mixer until very light and fluffy. (I use the flat paddle beater attachment.) Process the pistachios to coarse crumbs using a food processor (you can chop them by hand if you like). Finely grate the zest of the lemon.
  • Break the eggs into a small bowl, beat them with a fork, then add to the butter and sugar a little at a time with the mixer still beating. If there is any sign of curdling, add a little of the flour. Add the pistachios, ground almonds, lemon zest and rosewater. Lastly, mix in the flour.
  • Transfer the batter into the cake tin, then bake in the preheated oven for about 45-50 minutes until springy to the touch. Remove from the oven, leave to settle for 5 minutes then, using a palette knife, ease the cake from its tin and place on a wire cooling rack.
  • To make the icing, sieve the icing sugar into a bowl, stir in the lemon juice until you have an icing thick enough to cover the cake and drip down the sides. Spoon the icing over the cakes then scatter with the pistachios.


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