June 04, 2013

Pistachio and Strawberry Rose Meringue Cake

This stunning cake is the ideal centerpiece for a girly afternoon tea in the sunshine. Serve with beautiful rose champagne, and make sure you have lots of hungry guests with a sweet tooth. The lightness of this cake is perfect for warmer weather or a wedding celebration. The pictured cake was made by my talented friend Georgie, who has a cupcake and sweet business in Brisbane called Narnies Cupcakes. She can make an array of gorgeous treats, including macarons of all colours and flavours, beautiful wedding cakes and cupcakes, and can cater to your personal preferences and occasion.
Pistachio and Strawberry Rose Meringue Cake

*Please note, I have modified this recipe slightly from the cake pictured here. Original recipe was featured in the 2013 Gourmet Traveller Magazine, 'The Baking Cookbook'. 

Cake by Narnies Cupcakes
  • 1 punnet of strawberries, cut into small wedges
  • 3 tablespoons of caster sugar
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 200 grams of creme fraiche
  • 3 tablespoons of sifted icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of rose water
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 150 grams of caster sugar
  • 170 grams of plain flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 140 grams of pistachios, finely chopped
  • 80 grams of butter, melted and cooled
  • 3 eggwhites
  • 190 grams of caster sugar
  • pinch of cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon of rose water
  1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees. Whisk yolks and sugar in an electric mixer until pale and fluffy (5 - 7 minutes). Transfer to a large bowl and set aside. 
  2. Whisk egg whites in a clean bowl until stiff peaks form (3 - 4 minutes), fold in yolk mixture, then sieve over flour and baking powder and fold in along with pistachios and butter. 
  3. Spoon into a 20-cm diameter cake tin (buttered and lined) and bake for 30 - 35 minutes. Cool slightly in tin and turn out to completely cool on a wire rack.
  4. Trim the top of the cake so it is flat and cut in half horizontally.
  5. Combine strawberries, caster sugar, lemon juice and rose water and lightly crush with a fork, leaving ingredients to sit together to macerate for 30 minutes.
  6. Strain the liquid from the strawberries to use to cover the sides of the cake. Keep the strawberries aside.
  7. Whisk together the creme fraiche, icing sugar and rose water and set aside for later.
  8. To make the icing, stir caster sugar and 50ml of water in a saucepan over low heat to dissolve the sugar, then simmer for 5 minutes. Whisk the eggwhites and cream of tartar with a electric mixer until soft peaks form (2 - 3 minutes). Whisking continuously, add in sugar syrup in a thin steady stream until mixed. Increase speed of the mixer to high until the mixer is cooled - this takes up to 12 minutes, then whisk in the rose water.
  9. Place one piece of the halved cake on a serving stand. Cover the top of this cake with the creme fraiche mixture and scatter over the reserved strawberries.
  10. Top this first half of cake with the second half and cover with meringue icing. Smooth over the outside of the cake using a palette knife. You can serve with scattered rose petals or candied rose petals**.
*This cake is best eaten the day it is made.
**To make candied rose petal, brush unsprayed rose petals with eggwhite and rush in caster sugar. Set aside to dry on a wire rack and store in an airtight container until required.

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