I have been baking up a storm of cakes lately. It’s raining down frosting and cake crumbs around here! And obviously Bea and Tilly couldn’t be happier about my burst of Summer baking. Grant, on the other hand, may be in a sugar coma until Autumn! Grant got me a new KitchenAid Artisan Mini Stand Mixer that whips up the BEST frosting ever, so I can’t and won’t stop baking like my life depends on it! I have been experimenting with new flavors and varieties of cakes. One of my new favorites is the Persian Love Cake that I adapted from Epicurious.
The legend behind the creation of this aromatic and intoxicating cake is that a woman made this to seduce and charm a Persian Prince. Persian Love cakes are said to be enchanting and magical. With the use of cardamom, rose water, and saffron, I was immediately intrigued by this cake! Furthermore, Maria Antoinette apparently used cardamom incense around her palace when Mark Antony visited her since cardamom is said to be an aphrodisiac.
This cake sounds like the perfect way to kick off this sizzling Summer, so ritzy chefs, let’s fall in love with the exotic flavors and mystical appeal of this Persian Love Cake!
Find the full YouTube video demonstration with the trending pop culture inspiration behind it here, RECIPE DEMONSTRATION VIDEO!
The Cake Batter
This cake is a chiffon cake, which means that it’s light, spongey, and airy from whipped egg whites. The cake is indulgent while also being light enough that you may polish off half before you realize it!
First, you will make your dry ingredients by gently sifting cake flour with half of your sugar, salt, baking powder, and ground cardamom. Then, in a separate bowl, whisk your egg yolks, water, oil. Add this to your dry ingredients.
Using the whisk of your stand mixer, beat up your egg whites. When they are frothy, gradually add the rest of the sugar. You will beat it until it resembles marshmallow fluff. Then, using three additions, fold it into your batter.
Divide batter between two greased pans and bake.
Whipped Cream Frosting
I love whipped cream frostings, especially when they have a unique twist like this Persian Love Cake has. The twist comes in the form of saffron cream. Did you guys know that Saffron is the most expensive spice in the world? And this is due to the extensive labor it takes to harvest it.
First, get a small saucepan with half a cup of heavy cream on medium low heat. Then, sprinkle on a few strands of this special spice. You will bring it to a simmer and then remove from the heat to let it steep for about 20 minutes. Then make sure to chill this in the refrigerator until you’re ready to frost.
In your stand mixer with the cleaned whisk attachment, begin whipping up the remaining heavy whipping cream. Strain your saffron cream and add it. Then, add your powdered sugar, rosewater, and vanilla extract. The scent will be heavenly, and the saffron adds a touch of color to this as well.
Frosting the Persian Love Cake
As you can see from my video, I did a fairly simple layer cake method here. Since whipped cream is so light and needs to stay refrigerated after assembly, you will be spreading it instead of piping it. Take a little less than half for your first layer. Then place second cake layer on top and use a little less than half. With the bit of frosting that is left, spread around the sides. Some people decorate with fresh roses or candied rose petals. I used these red rose decorations and some crushed pistachios for added crunch and saltiness. Also, pistachios are the perfect compliment for rosewater and cardamom.
Persian Love Cake
An airy chiffon cake infused with cardamom. The rosewater whipped cream has saffron and a touch of vanilla for an enchanting result!
- 1 cup cake flour
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
- 1 cup granulated sugar divided in half
- 1/4 tsp. ground cardamom
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup olive or canola oil
- 1 tsp. rosewater
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream for steeping safrron
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 3 threads saffron
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup pistachios roasted and chopped
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease two 8 inch cake pans.
In a bowl, sift flour, salt, baking powder, cardamom, and 1/2 cup of sugar,
In a second bowl, whisk egg yolks, water, oil.
Add wet mixture to dry ingredients and mix.
In a stand mixer, whisk up egg whites. When frothy, add in remaining sugar gradually until mixture resembles marshmallow fluff.
In 3 additions, fold into batter. Do not overmix.
Divide into 2 cake pans and bake for approx. 18 minutes. Let cool completely!
In a small saucepan, bring 1/2 cup heavy cream and saffron to simmer then remove from heat and steep 20 minutes. Then, chill until use.
In stand mixer, with whisk attachment, add heavy cream. Strain saffron cream in. Begin whisking and add in powdered sugar, vanilla, and rosewater. Whip until stiff. Frost and dust with pistachios.
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