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Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

Rhubarb Pistachio Cake. came about 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.

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 Cake.

About Rhubarb Pistachio Cake:

This cake is beautiful in a lovely, down-home kind of way, but it still has a touch of sophistication. 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 Rhubarb Pistachio Cake has a creamy yogurt rhubarb sauce. It 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 with it’s sweet & sour tanginess. Then it could be served with a little vanilla ice-cream, too. Or maybe I’d just put more rhubarb on the top of the cake before baking and skip a sauce, altogether.

Making Rhubarb Pistachio Cake:

I did make a few modifications to the original cake. It was shown in the Martha Stewart Magazine with very large. very dramatic chunks of rhubarb. Instead, I opted to slice the rhubarb into bite-sized pieces. 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.

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, and was ready when I was ready for it.

Rhubarb Pistachio Cake
Rhubarb Pistachio Cake
Saving Money on Rhubarb Pistachio Cake:

Really the best money saving tips revolve around the Rhubarb, and expensive item to actually buy at the store. Grow your own if you have time and space (Rhubarb takes several years to get established) or do what I did and hit up a neighbor.

I already mentioned the orange blossom water/orange extract, so that was a bit of a savings. And as far as the pistachios go, again, there’s a pricey ingredient. In checking later, I found that the already shelled pistachios were more expensive than the shelled, but as I shelled these, it was shell a few for the cake, eat a couple, shell a few more, eat another few. I may have eaten up all the savings!

Do watch for yogurt on sale. It has such a long refrigerator shelf life that it’s worth picking up an extra at the sales price, or more than that if you eat every day. (And if you do, consider buying the large cartons and add flavorings as you serve t up. Maybe a little jam or fresh fruit.) If you’re flexible in the brand, it seems there’s always at least one type of yogurt on sale. Both Costco and Aldi are great places to pick up a good quality yogurt.

Rhubarb Pistachio Cake
Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

  • Servings: 8
  • 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 the 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 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.

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If a cake can be casual and sophisticated at the same time, Rhubarb Pistachio Cake fits the bill. Light, fluffy and flavorful, this cake screams summer! This cake is different and bound to be noticed. #RhubarbCake #RhubarbPistachioCake #RhubarbDessert

26 Comments on “Rhubarb Pistachio Cake

    • 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. Hi! Thanks for following back.

    This sounds amazing, I’ve had rhubarb and almond together but not this combo.

    Looking forward to the next post.

    Jacko 🙂

  2. 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 🙂

  3. I am a big fan of pistachios and even make some pesto every summer using this wonderful nut. Your dessert looks fabulous.

  4. 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!

    • 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!

  5. Pingback: Rhubarb Pistachio Cake – hedgecraft

  6. 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.

    • 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…

    • Thanks, Ahila – and I had to laugh a bit when you said that because I AM building a little collection of them, lol!! I just looooove rhubarb, lol!!

      Mollie

  7. Rhubarb and pistachio..what a lovely combination 😀 Thank you for sharing this with everyone at this week’s Fiesta Friday xx

    • Thanks, Elaine! You’re the best host, too!! To tell you the truth I’ve only ever ate pistachios out of hand, but this was lovely!!

      Mollie

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