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Orange-pistachio Bundt cake with saffron syrup

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Prep 25min (+ 1hr cooling time)Bake 45minMakes 12 serves

This cake falls into that category of "less is more". The cake itself is a simple one-bowl mix whipped up in the food processor, but when baked in a decorative Bundt cake tin and infused with an almost fluorescent saffron syrup, it is one that will definitely impress.

Ingredients
  • 15g butter, melted
    1 teaspoon plain flour
    2 tablespoons unsalted pistachio kernels, toasted and chopped, to sprinkle

Orange and pistachio cake

  • 100g unsalted pistachio kernels, toasted
    1 orange, quartered, cored and seeds removed
    220g (1 cup) caster sugar
    125g butter, melted and cooled
    2 eggs, at room temperature
    185g (1¼ cups) self-raising flour

Saffron syrup

  • 1 large pinch saffron threads
    125ml (½ cup) boiling water
    125ml (½ cup) strained freshly squeezed orange juice
    110g (½ cup) caster sugar
Method
  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C (150°C fan-forced). Combine the 15g melted butter with the 1 teaspoon plain flour and use a pastry brush to grease a 2 litre (8 cup) Bundt tin (see Baker's Tips).
  2. Place the pistachios in a food processor and process until very finely ground. Add the whole orange, sugar, butter and eggs to the food processor and process until the orange rind is finely chopped and the mixture is almost smooth. Add the self-raising flour and process briefly until just combined.
  3. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin. Tap the tin firmly on the benchtop 3 times to settle the mixture. Bake in preheated oven for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Stand the cake in the tin for 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, place the saffron in a small dish and add about 1 tablespoon of the boiling water. Set aside to infuse. Combine the remaining boiling water, orange juice and sugar in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Add the saffron mixture, bring to a simmer over high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes or until reduced slightly.
  5. Turn the cake onto a serving plate or cake stand with a lip. Gradually pour the hot saffron syrup over the cake, allowing it to soak in. Set aside and allow to cool (this will take about 1 hour). Serve sprinkled with the chopped pistachios.
Baker's Tips
  • This cake will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
  • I baked this cake in a Nordic Ware Heritage Bundt pan.
  • You can also bake this cake as eight individual Bundts. Combine 30g butter, melted, with 2 teaspoons plain flour and grease eight individual 250ml (1 cup) Bundt tins. Divide the mixture evenly among the tins and then tap them firmly on the benchtop 3 times to settle the mixture. Bake at 190°C (170°C) for 18-20 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Stand in the tins for 5 minutes before turning onto a serving plate and pouring the syrup over. I used the Nordic Ware Heritage Bundtlette pans for these smaller Bundt cakes – each tray has 6 holes so you will have to bake the remaining two cakes separately.

       

      This recipe is part of Anneka's SBS Food Bakeproof: Bundt Cakes online column. For more Bakeproof columns and recipes, click here.

      Photography by Alan Benson. 

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