Sponge Cake with Studded Pistachios
Drizzled with orange syrup, or topped with orange buttercream frosting, these small cakes make such delicious gifts, you'll want to keep them for yourself.
6 large eggs, separated
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar - divided use
1/2 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon grated orange peel
1 1/4 cups all-cups flour
1/4 cup natural California pistachios, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup water
1 teaspoon orange peel
1/2 cup natural California pistachios, chopped
- Beat egg whites until frothy; add cream of tartar and beat at high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add 3/4 cup sugar; continue beating until stiff but not dry. Set aside.
- Beat yolks about 3 minutes or until very thick and light in color. Add remaining sugar 1 tablespoon at a time; beat until thick. Add orange juice and peel; blend until smooth.
- Thoroughly combine flour, finely chopped pistachios and salt; gently fold into egg yolk mixture until well-blended.
- Fold yolk mixture into beaten whites. Pour into 6 (5 3/4 x 3 1/4 x 2 1/4-inch) ungreased pans; cut through batter with spatula to remove air bubbles.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 325°F (160°C) for 25 to 35 minutes or until cakes spring back when lightly touched. Immediately invert pans on wire racks; cool completely.
- To remove cakes, loosen around edges of pans with knife.
- Pour Orange Syrup over cakes; allow to sit until syrup is absorbed.
- Orange Syrup: Combine sugar, water and orange peel; bring to boil. Simmer, uncovered, 2 minutes; cool 10 minutes. Makes 1 cup syrup.
- Garnish tops of cakes with chopped pistachios.
Makes 6 small loaves.
Variation: Orange Buttercream Icing can be substituted for Orange Syrup. Combine 3 cups powdered sugar, 6 tablespoons softened butter, 5 tablespoons half-and-half or milk and 1 teaspoon grated orange peel. Spread about 1/4 cup over top and sides of each cake. Garnish with chopped natural California pistachios. Makes 1 3/4 cups icing.
Recipe and photograph provided courtesy of the California Pistachio Board.