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I’ve discovered a love of nuts quite late in life ūüėČ

I detest marzipan so always assumed that I hated almonds, walnuts never floated my boat and if I got a nut at the centre of a Christmas chocolate, I’d be very disappointed indeed. ¬†Once you ‘know’ that you don’t like something as a child, you tend to avoid it like the plague.

pistachios in shells

As a young adult I became very concerned with fat. ¬†Fat was my enemy and I’d avoid it at all costs – it would be another decade before I really came to understand that not all fats are bad and that in fact some fats are very good!

pistachios and almonds

In my pursuit of good fats as part of a healthier lifestyle, I tentatively nibbled on a few almonds – I’d heard that just¬†a couple¬†a day can lower your cholesterol. ¬†They were really nice. ¬†I tried brazil nuts – my colleague told me they were good for hair and skin. ¬†They were really nice. ¬†I de-shelled my first pistachio – I’d been told they were really nice. ¬†THEY WERE REALLY, REALLY NICE!!

pistachios peeled

I have been missing out on these little morsels my whole life??

Since then pistachios have become my snack of choice. ¬†The shells are a great indicator of how many you’ve eaten and because you have to peel them, you can’t absent-mindedly pop them in your mouth.

This love heart cake show cases the favour, crunch and colour of my most favourite nut!

pistachio cake recipe love heart valentines rose Oooh look at those roses….

pistachio cake rose


This cake tastes as good as it looks – would you like to make some?

You will need:

200g unsalted, shelled pistachios

100g Ground almonds

6 whole almonds

250g Butter or Margarine Рwe used a heart healthy cholesterol reducing spread!

4 eggs

140 g light brown sugar

60g caster sugar

50g plain flour


  • Preheat your oven to 160, gas mark 3
  • Combine the sugar and margarine and beat until the mixture begins to pale.
  • Add the eggs and mix well (the mix may start to look like it’s curdling – but don’t panic!)
  • Weigh out 120g of pistachios and blend them until finely ground.
  • Add the ground pistachios and almonds to the mix.
  • Stir until combined and then add the flour.

pistachio cake mix

  • Spoon into a prepared tin – I use a silicone one as I find it easier to turn the cake out.
  • Bake for around 30 minutes or until the mixture is set and yiu can poke a skewer in and it comes out clean.
  • Now this is the part that makes me question whether the recipe is good for sharing – the top burns. ¬†There doesn’t seem to be any way of avoiding this and I simply slice the top off. ¬†If anything, this is the perfect base for the nut topping, but I realise it isn’t ideal. ¬†I’m sharing the recipe despite this because it tastes soooo good!

pistachio cake

  • So slice the top off ūüôā ¬†and spread with a thin layer of lemon curd (here’s my lemon curd recipe).
  • Chop up the almonds and the remaining pistachios and sprinkle on the top of the cake.
  • Serve with more lemon curd.

pistachio cake slice vintage chintz plate

There you have it – my oddly coloured love heart cake that my whole family went nuts for …see what I did there.

Love Rachel


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