Pistachio Baklava Cake By Najmieh Batmanglij

One, 9-inch cake.

1 cup honey
1/4 cup rose water
Zest of 1 orange
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

3 eggs, separated (room temperature)
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cardamom powder
2 tablespoons rose water
1/2 cup milk or almond milk
1/2 cup oil
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour sifted with 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cups ground pistachios
1 apple, peeled, cored, and chopped (optional)

2 tablespoons raw pistachio kernels
1 tablespoon blanched almonds
1 teaspoon dried rose petals


In a saucepan, combine all the ingredients for the glaze. Bring to a boil, stir gently, simmer for a few minutes, remove from heat and set aside. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter an 8-inch spring form cake pan and line the base with parchment paper. Then butter and dust the top of the parchment paper. In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar until creamy. Add the cardamom, rose water, milk, and oil, and whisk for 1 minute longer. Add the flour, pistachios, and apple, and fold in with a rubber spatula. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites until there are soft peaks. Fold into the flour mixture until you have a smooth, light batter. Gently pour the batter into the cake pan and bake for 40 to 45 minutes until a tester comes out clean. Remove the pan from the oven and place it on a cooling rack. Pour half of the glaze over the cake, and leave the cake in the pan until it has absorbed all the syrup. Tap the pan to release the cake and transfer to a serving dish. Cut into diamond shapes, pour the remaining glaze over the cake, and decorate with pistachios, almonds, and rose petals.

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fun facts

Pistachios, when eaten with high-carbohydrate foods, may result in lower than expected blood sugar levels, an important factor in reducing risk of diabetes.

According to a Penn State University study, it is suggested that pistachios reduce the body's biological response to stress.

One serving of pistachios has as much potassium (300mg, 8%) as an orange (250mg, 7%).

Pistachios are high in phytosterols which may lower cholesterol levels and decrease the risk of heart disease. In animal studies phytosterols have been shown to potentially have anti-cancer properties.

One serving of pistachios is 49 nuts, more than any other tree nut.

Forty-nine pistachios serve up to 20 percent of your Daily Value of B6, about the same as half an avocado.

You can obtain more dietary fiber from a serving of pistachios (3g) than a 1/2 cup of cooked broccoli, and the same amount of dietary fiber as an orange or an apple — approximately 10 percent of the Daily Value.

Just a single serving of pistachios provides you with the same amount of protein in a one-ounce serving of soybeans and can serve as a protein alternative to meat, poultry or beans according to the USDA Food Guide Pyramid.

Pistachios are a naturally cholesterol-free snack and contain just 1.5 grams of saturated fat.

Celebrate the greatness of nuts! October 22 is National Nut Day and February 26 is National Pistachio Day!