I love this Persian Love Bundt filled with exotic flavours like rose cardamom and pistachio its the perfect exotic cake for Valentines Day

Persian Love Bundt

Based on two variations on Persian Love Cake, this Persian Love Bundt cake is the perfect sweet treat to serve up on Valentines Day. 

A tale of two loves

Persian Love Cake is all over the internet (Pinterest in particular…) but for such a famous cake no one seems to know where it originally came from with some sites suggesting it was only first published in 2005.

I’m a sucker for the history behind different dishes and if there’s a romantic tale or tragedy behind its construction then even better! So, with a name like Persian Love Cake I expected there to be a tale of love, passion and perhaps even a bit of lust involved.

The best I could find was the following courtesy of ChocolateChalk.com:

a French woman fell in love with an Iranian prince and created this cake to show her feelings for him. However, she was unaware of his severe allergy to one of spices she has used in the cake and he died on the spot after only a few bites

Note to self: re-check OH’s allergies before baking for him…there’s a lesson for us all there!

Some of the stories I came across were a little happier but who doesn’t like a bit of tragedy. It’s no Romeo and Juliet but I guess it will have to do!

 I love this Persian Love Bundt filled with exotic flavours like rose cardamom and pistachio its the perfect exotic cake for Valentines Day

A tale of two cakes

It would seem however that for every version of the story behind the cake there is a different recipe.

The two biggest variations being the ingredients for the sponge. Some say that Persian Love Cake is made from a chiffon sponge spiked with the flavours of cardamom and pistachio, topped with light, rose flavoured cream. Others say its a much more dense cake made from ground almonds instead of flour. This second variation is often dusted with icing sugar and topped with rose petals and chopped nuts.

It would seem just like love itself Persian Love Cake comes in many forms. So I decided to break the mould and come up with my very own Persian Love Bundt which is a bit of a mix of both!

A Valentines Day Treat

The exotic, aromatic flavours of rose, cardamom and pistachio are bound to stir up a few emotions making this recipe the perfect sweet treat this Valentine’s Day.

I baked this cake to celebrate another special occasion, the engagement of my big sister Niki and her partner Chris! It’s the perfect cake for a romantic celebration!

Who will you bake your Persian Love Bundt for?

This Persian Love Bundt is based on the classic Persian Love Cake made with almonds pistachios rose and saffron its the perfect cake for Valentines Day 

Persian Love Bundt – The Recipe

Persian Love Bundt

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yield: 1 bundt cake

Serving Size: Serves 12

Ingredients

  • 100ml warm almond milk
  • 3 strands of saffron
  • 6 eggs
  • 220g golden caster sugar
  • 250ml natural yogurt
  • 150g ground almonds
  • 150g self raising flour
  • The seeds from 5 cardamom pods (ground)
  • 50g chopped pistachios
  • Zest of one lemon and half an orange
  • 2 tbsp rosewater
  • To decorate
  • 6tbsp honey
  • Juice of an orange
  • 1 tbsp rose water
  • Rose petals
  • Extra pistachios
  • Icing Sugar

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 140C and grease your pan
  2. Begin by adding the saffron to the warm milk and place to one side.
  3. While the milk is infusing, beat together the eggs and sugar until thick and creamy.
  4. Fold in the yogurt being careful not to burst too many of the air bubbles created in the previous step.
  5. Next, fold in the ground almonds, flour, ground cardamom, citrus zest and chopped pistachios. Finally add the rosewater and the milk and saffron mix to the cake batter, stirring gently.
  6. Bake in the centre of the oven for between 45 minutes and an hour or until the cake is bouncy to the touch, a skewer comes away clean from the centre of the cake and the cake has begun to move away from the edges of the pan.
  7. Leave the cake to cool for 5-10 minutes in the pan before transferring on to a cooling rack.
  8. While the cake is cooling make a syrup from the honey, orange juice and rose water.
  9. Heat the syrup gently before spooning over the cake.
  10. To decorate, scatter rose petals and pistachios over the cake.
  11. Once the cake has cooled completely and the syrup has soaked in, dust lightly with icing sugar.

Notes

1. Use a food processor on the 'pulse' setting to chop the pistachios quickly.

2. The batter is quite wet. Don't panic! It's meant to be like that.

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Get the look!

When you make this cake your kitchen will be filled with the heady aromas of spice, citrus and roses. If you other half isn’t already swarming around you like a bee around honey they will be when they can smell this cooking.

This year as well as nibbling on slices of cake and sipping herbal tea, we’ll be celebrating Valentine’s Day in the not so traditional style of the Chinese New Year parade in central London which just happens to fall on the same day. We never have been a very traditional couple – always trying to break the rules! It will be nice however to get out of the house and let someone else cook dinner!

Rose and pistachio are two of the most important flavours in Persian Love Cake I choose to decorate my Persian Love Bundt with delicate rose buds and whole pistachios

How will you be celebrating Valentine’s Day this year? Do you cook for your loved one on special occasions? I’d love to hear in the comments below!

38 comments

  1. This cake sounds utterly delicious and your photos give it justice – very vibrant and evocative! I have a bundt tin too, but its not as swirly as yours so maybe an excuse to buy a new one before attempting a love cake like this!

    1. Thanks Ceri 🙂 I was pretty pleased with how the photos came out and that my sister and her fiancé loved it!!! You sound a lot like me too…I almost bought a new bundt tin just for this cake…I feel like I need a different tin for each recipe :-p

  2. Well that story had a hilariously tragic twist I was not expecting! I’ve actually never seen this cake around before, but it’s gorgeous! Citrus and rosewater is such a great combo. I bet your sister and her fiance loved this. That’s so sweet of you to make it for them!

    1. Awww thanks Tracy 🙂 I love the story too :-p it’s certainly not a classic love story hehehe but you’re right citrus and rose is a beautiful combo which this cake takes to a whole new level. You should give it a go!

    1. What a coincidence 🙂 I’ve seen so many different variations but was very pleased how mine turned out, I’m glad you like it 😀

  3. Thanks for a great recipe! Made it for my daughter on Valentine’s Day. Wish I could send you a pic, it is so pretty! Cheers.

    1. Awesome 😀 if you have twitter or Facebook you can always send it to me there! The Facebook page is named after the blog ad my twitter handle is @KitchenGoddess3. I would love to see it 🙂

  4. Great you mentioned the story! It was unknown to me 🙂 a bit sad but hey… I think the guy had a great last dessert and thought! Awesome photography too!

  5. *Squeal* it’s so pretty! Oh what glorious photographs and the cake looks bootiful 😀 I can’t stand rose water (I swear I can detect it’s presence at a concentration of 1 part per million 😉 ) but there is so much going on here that I love I bet it would be superb without it 😀

    1. Thanks Jo you’re very sweet 🙂 you probably could leave the rose water out. Perhaps replace it with orange blossom instead? Let me know if you do tweak it! Would be interested to see how it turns out

  6. Beautiful cake.
    Can I use ordinary milk instead of almond milk ?Have all the ingredients apart from this one.
    Making it tomorrow. Thank you

  7. This cake looks amazing! I want to make a 4 layer cake for the bottom tier of a wedding cake, would this recipe work? Or would it be too heavy? Thanks!

    1. Hi Tina. I’m no experts at wedding cakes but provided you were using dowel rods between your layers I think it would be fine 😀 what a lovely idea!! And good luck!

  8. Hi
    I made this cake last week. It was lovely, but something seemed missing. Should there be butter in this recipe? There is no mention of it in the recipe or directions, but I did notice butter was mentioned as a tag.
    I’m about to try them again, and wonder if this would help to make a more tender cake.
    Thanks!

    1. Hi Kelley. I hope you’re well! Thank you for thr feedback on the cake. I don’t make mine using butter – the yogurt brings many of the same properties but is more acidic which is true to the more authentic recipe. By all means try it with butter and let me know your thoughts!

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