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Pistachio and lemon cake recipe with ricotta and candied peels

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Thers makes a two-tiered cake. If you prefer to make just one, halve the amounts for the cake itself and use the filling as a garnish, sprinkled with pistachios and rose petals. I always think a two-tier cake looks more lavish. You can add a little more chocolate if you like, but I just like the weird sheen of its bitterness.

Preparation time: 20 minutes | Cooking time: 45 minutes

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  • 330g pistachio kernels
  • 75g white breadcrumbs
  • 350g caster sugar
  • 4 teaspoons of baking powder
  • Finely grated zest of 2 unwaxed lemons
  • 400 ml olive oil
  • 8 medium eggs
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For filling

  • 250g ricotta, fresh if possible
  • 110g of mascarpone
  • 2½ tablespoons of icing sugar
  • Finely grated zest of one lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 70g candied peel
  • 20g chopped pistachios
  • 15g dark chocolate, chopped
  • ½ tablespoon of orange blossom water (optional)


  • Icing sugar for dusting
  • 25g chopped pistachios
  • Rose petals (off-white or yellow petals are pretty and springy), unsprayed


  1. Preheat the oven to 180 ° C / 160 ° C fan / gas 4.
  2. Put the pistachios for the cake in a spice grinder and powder them. (You can use a food processor, but it won’t do so thinly.) Toss with the crumbs, powdered sugar, baking powder and lemon zest. In another bowl, combine the oil and eggs, then fold them into the dry ingredients. Scrape into two oiled, base-lined 20 cm cake tins and bake for 45 minutes. The cakes should come off the sides of the boxes.
  3. Let the cakes cool in their molds for about 10 minutes, then unmold them by peeling off the paper. Put one on a serving plate and the other on a piece of baking paper on a wire rack (the paper makes it easier to lift – it’s a fairly fragile cake).
  4. To make the filling, beat together the ricotta and mascarpone with the icing sugar. Add the other ingredients and mix. Spread it over the cake on the plate and place the other cake on top. Sprinkle with icing sugar and sprinkle with pistachios and rose petals.
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