Little Lucie was born on September 30, 2010, but before her arrival my girlfriend, Carrie, and I threw Lucie's mom, Suzanne, a baby shower at my parents' house in Maine. Suzanne requested a pistachio cake with chocolate frosting, however, after much sleuthing I couldn't find a single crave-worthy, from-scratch pistachio cake recipe. I emailed Annie at Annie's Eats and she did a test-run of a Martha Stewart recipe. But, when she described the cake as "dense" I knew it wasn't going to fly for my fluffy cake loving mom-to-be. So I set out to create my own all-natural (as in "from scratch") pistachio cake recipe to satisfy a pregnant woman's cravings.
makes 24 cupcakes
1 c. unsalted butter at room temperature (2 sticks)
2 c. sugar
2 cups unsalted, shelled pistachios, measured then ground into a fine powder
2 1/2 c. flour
1 T. baking powder
1 t. salt
1 t. vanilla
1 c. milk
1/2 c. unsalted shelled pistachios, chopped
1. In an electric stand mixer with the paddle attachment beat the butter and sugar for several minutes until the mixture comes together and pulls away from the sides.
2. Add eggs once at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla. Add ground pistachio powder.
4. Line 24 muffin tins with paper liners and divide batter evenly among the 24 cups.
5. Bake at 350 for 18 - 22 minutes, just until the center of the cupcake bounces back when lightly touched. Cool in pan for a few minutes then remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack completely before frosting.
I usually double this recipe for a generous heaping of frosting on each cupcake
1/2 c. unsalted butter (1 stick)
4 oz. unsweetened chocolate (4 squares), melted and cooled
16 oz. confectioner's sugar
2 t. vanilla
up to 1/3 c. milk
In an electric stand mixer with the paddle attachment beat the butter until it's soft and fluffy. Add chocolate, sugar and half of the milk and mix until combined. Continue adding milk, slowly, until desired consistency. Beat very well until fluffy. If the frosting is too thick, add 1t. of milk at a time, beating well after each addition.
I like to divide the frosting evenly among the 24 cupcakes before spreading so I can make sure to frost each evenly.