Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

Sometimes a recipe gets made because there’s a “perfect storm” of ingredients! A neighbor volunteered some rhubarb, I had just picked up a new carton of yogurt and I knew I had a stash of pistachios in the freezer. Then I happened to open up the April Martha Stewart magazine. Just one of a stack of magazines I’ve been meaning to get to.

Rhubarb Pistachio Cake
Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

I had found a few quiet minutes to sit outside and thumb through the food photos (I always look at the food, first, lol! Do you?) and there it was, in all it’s glory – a sweet little cake just begging to be made. It was fate. It was Rhubarb Pistachio Cake.

I did make a few modifications; primarily I skipped the dramatic large chunks of rhubarb in the recipe, instead opting to slice mine. If you know rhubarb, it can be fibrous and I was afraid the pieces would be dragged out of the cake when a bite was cut.

I also used a non-fat yogurt (that’s all there was at the store) and subbed in orange extract for the orange blossom water (a pricey and hard to find ingredient in some areas) but the subtle orange flavor was all but lost in the cake. I’d say use orange extract if you have it but just go with the vanilla if you don’t. The directions, too, were clarified.

Rhubarb Pistachio Cake
Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

This cake is beautiful in a lovely, down home kind of way. Very moist, tender and light, the texture was almost fluffy – due to the ground pistachios, no doubt. It’s one of those cakes that you can just pull out casually – not too over the top, not too fussy and quite different. The directions say to serve cool, but I thought it was even better slightly warm.

The creamy yogurt rhubarb sauce was a nice addition, but in the future, I might just substitute an old-fashioned rhubarb sauce, just like my Grandma used to make. That would really bring the rhubarb flavor home. Or maybe I’d just put more rhubarb on the top and skip a sauce, altogether.

Aside from opening the pistachios (I hear you can buy them out of the shell) the recipe was pretty straightforward. I loved the roasted rhubarb and it just hung out, doing it’s thing in the oven, as I put together everything else.

Rhubarb Pistachio Cake
Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

  • Servings: 8
  • Time: abt 2 hrs
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

  • 1 stick plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan (divided)
  • 2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt (non-fat or low-fat is fine) divided
  • 1 pound rhubarb, trimmed and cut crosswise into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt (divided)
  • 1/2  cup shelled unsalted pistachios (2 1/4 ounces)
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons orange-blossom water or pure vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Butter an 8-inch-round, 2-inch-deep cake pan and line bottom with parchment; butter parchment. Place 1 cup yogurt in a fine-mesh sieve set over a bowl and let drain in refrigerator.

Meanwhile, toss together rhubarb, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon butter, and 1/4 teaspoon salt on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast, stirring once, just until tender, about 15 minutes. Remove, reserving rhubarb and juice. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.

In a food processor, finely grind pistachios. Add flour, baking powder, and remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt; pulse to combine.

In a medium bowl, beat together remaining 1 stick butter and 1 cup granulated sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, scraping after each addition. Add the orange-blossom water, vanilla or extract and beat for a moment to combine.

Reduce speed to low and beat in flour mixture in two additions, flour first, alternating with one cup of the yogurt. Transfer batter to pan and smooth top.

Using a slotted spoon, remove about half the rhubarb from the rhubarb syrup mixture and place over the top in a single layer. (Refrigerate remaining rhubarb in syrup until ready to serve.)

Sprinkle cake with granulated sugar and bake until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, about 1 hour, 15 minutes. (If browning too quickly, tent with foil.) Let cool in pan on a wire rack 15 minutes. Run a small sharp knife around edges. Invert onto a cutting board, then immediately flip onto rack; let cool completely.

To serve, stir confectioners’ sugar into drained yogurt. Add the remaining yogurt and some of the syrup to the yogurt and stir. Reserve the rest of the syrup. When ready to serve, top the cake slices with the yogurt mixture and drizzle with the remaining syrup.

from the kitchen of http://www.frugalhausfrau.com, slightly adapted from Martha Stewart

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Today, of course, I’ll be linking to our very own Throwback Thursday Link Party, hosted by Quinn of Dad What’s for Dinner, Meaghan of 4 Sons are Us, Alli of Tornadough, Carlee from Cooking with Carlee and Moi! That’s right – me!

Click over to our latest Throwback Thursday post for links to their blogs and social media, rules and more info or, as always, to see all the links or add your own, click on the little blue frog, below.

And, as I do almost every Friday, I’ll be linking up to Angie’s Fiesta Friday – this week is Fiesta Friday 125, and the co-hosts this week are Quinn @ dadwhats4dinner and Elaine @ Foodbod.

26 thoughts on “Rhubarb Pistachio Cake”

    1. Thanks Rhonda! It’s a fun one and a nice change of pace. I love smaller cakes like this that aren’t such an extravaganza…Although I wouldn’t turn down a four layer chocolate one, lol!!

  1. Love, love, love your rhubarb pistachio cake Mollie. Isn’t it wonderful when all the ingredients come together like yours did? It looks so moist and flavorful, and with a dollop of that yogurt, wow! I’ll take a piece now, and one to go please 🙂

  2. You are making me so anxious to bake with rhubarb. I am sure my chance for fresh rhubarb is done for the season in our area though. Dang! And yes, you can by pistachios out of the shell… that would make this much easier!

    1. Well, I’m just about out of rhubarb, lol!! And how did I not know that about the pistachios? Huh-duuuuh!!! Well, I love them so maybe it’s for the best because I’d eat them all the time if I had them unshelled!!!

      I guess sometimes I get in a rut and when you know where everything you buy is at the store, you forget to take a beat and look around!!! You just reach for the same old thing all the time without thinking!

  3. Wow Mollie that cake looks so good, moist and delicious. Pistachio and rhubarb sound like a match made in heaven. Your yogurt topping is much better for us than whipped cream. It looks lovely. Hope you are ok.

    1. Thanks, and I’m doing better, but I’m crying off and on – I saw a big yellow lab that reminded me of Gibson today and burst into tears driving down the road…but I’m doing that kind of thing less and less…I’ve always been too much of a softie…

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