Looking for a cake to pair with fresh fruit? Consider this, a light yet rich butter cake flavored with deep green pistachio flour and honey. Pistachio flour adds a mysterious aroma to the cake and a distinctive color with a hint of smokiness. Honey makes this cake especially moist. In France a rich cake baked in a loaf is referred to as a Gateau de Voyage, a travelling cake. We think you’ll want to make this one to take to friends.
We realize that it might not be practical for the home bakers among our readers to purchase pistachio flour for home use. Know that this recipe will be equally good when made with almond flour in place of the pistachio flour in the recipe. The color and flavor will change but not its deliciousness.
(We took inspiration for this recipe for one in a book by London chefs Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers, Italian Easy: Recipes from the London River Cafe.)
Here is our Pistachio Honey Cake Recipe
We love the rich history of Italian bakeries in the US, especially those in New York and the surrounding areas. Here is a fun article from AM New York with vintage photographs of some of the oldest among them.
You might enjoy reading it then making a tour of these bakeries on your own. We created this Google map of Italian Bakeries in NY just for that purpose.
Mardi Gras – A world of tradition surrounds Fat Tuesday, (Mardi Gras, Shrove Tuesday) the Christian celebration of the start of Lenten fasting. Crêpes and pancakes figure into many Mardi Gras celebrations as a simple way to use up any butter or eggs before a period without. .
We’ve paired the intense flavor of our Almond Schmear with creamy ricotta as a plump filling for warm crêpes. The tartness of raspberries contrasts nicely with the ricotta although blueberries would work well too. Crêpes can be made ahead and kept frozen making this a perfect dish to serve at brunch. As the season’s change, sautéed fresh fruit such as pears or peaches would make an excellent accompaniment. (And for those with a real sweet tooth, try our Chocolate Schmear in this recipe in place of the Almond Schmear.)
Here is our recipe for Raspberry Almond Ricotta Crêpes.
Dresdener Stollen is less than a plane ride away as bakeries across the country start selling them for the holiday season. And of course you can make your own from our Marzipan Stollen recipe here. But if you do happen to find yourself Germany this month, December 3rd marks the annual festival of the Dresden Stollen, said to be the progenitor of all the varieties we find available today.