Pistachio Layer Cake {Milk Bar Monday 2/24}

Okay. I know I keep saying that i’ll be back to regularly scheduled posting soon… but that’s just not happening yet.

There is so much that I have to share with you about life in Napa and what it’s like to be in wine school. But if my lack of posting tells you anything, it’s not all fun and drinking games.

We just finished our midterms and are officially done with all of our wine classes. Now we move on to things like beer, coffee, tea, and mixology to round out the “beverage” part of the wine and beverage program.

Anyways. This cake was for my favorite blogging group, Milk Bar Mondays. It’s really the only blogging I make time for these days. I get my sugar fix, and totally stress myself out because i’m making a cake a not studying… But it’s worth it.

IMG 7838 Pistachio Layer Cake {Milk Bar Monday 2/24}

Jacqueline picked the recipe this time. I was excited to tackle another Tosi cake recipe.

Don’t forget to check out Jacqueline’s gluten free cake recipe!

If i’ve learned anything since my culinary class, it to set up my mise-en-place before getting started.

Mise-en-place basically means to put everything in it’s place. It’s taking some extra time before even starting to cook anything to assemble and measure out all the ingredients you need for the recipe(s).

I set up my little stations and labelled them so I knew exactly what was going where. I HIGHLY recommend doing this for these complicated recipes. You don’t have to take time to measure while things are going. And it helps you keep the kitchen tidy as you cook.

This cake is amazing despite a few things I had to change. Here are a few of my tips on how to make sure you have no problem with the recipe.

  1. The cake recipe doesn’t seem like it’s going to work, but it totally will. Have faith.
  2. I couldn’t find pistachio oil so I sub’d almond oil. It takes away some of the flavor but it’s a good alternative. If you can’t find almond oil, try grape seed oil. Also, I skipped the part where you brush the cake with oil. My cake was dense and moist as it was, so I didn’t think the oil was necessary.
  3. I made my own pistachio paste. It was super easy. Check out the recipe below.
  4. I used my own lemon curd recipe instead of Tosi’s.

IMG 7845 Pistachio Layer Cake {Milk Bar Monday 2/24}

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Chèvre Frozen Yogurt with Pistachio Crunch and Beet-Lime Ganache {Milk Bar Monday 5/7}

Welcome to another Milk Bar Monday!

This week we tackled our most challenging recipe yet. It was a multiple step process with weird ingredients.

It all started out a little rocky for me when I was looking through the recipe, trying to figure out what all I needed, and saw the pistachio crunch required pistachio nut paste and feuilletineUmm…what??

When I went to my local grocery store I knew there was no way they would have either one of these speciality items. As I was walking around I called all the health food stores, grocery stores, and kitchen supply stores in West Lafayette and Carmel.

beets Chèvre Frozen Yogurt with Pistachio Crunch and Beet Lime Ganache {Milk Bar Monday 5/7}

No such luck with anything. After a quick google search I found I could make my own pistachio paste and substitute the feuilletine with corn flakes. No big deal…or so I thought!

Making the pistachio nut paste turned out to be super expensive (1 cup of pistachios at my store = $8) and not as easy as I expected. I actually overheated my Vitamix forcing me to use my little hand choppy thing and do it in small batches.

pistachios Chèvre Frozen Yogurt with Pistachio Crunch and Beet Lime Ganache {Milk Bar Monday 5/7}

I also ended up having to add some green food coloring, otherwise it would have been a gross brown paste. So not appetizing. 

The beets took forever to roast to a mushy state and I was a little worried the ganache was going to break with the lime juice, but it luckily all worked out.

beet puree Chèvre Frozen Yogurt with Pistachio Crunch and Beet Lime Ganache {Milk Bar Monday 5/7}

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Pistachio Strawberry Cupcakes {Holiday Recipe Club 3/15}

It’s time for another edition of Holiday Recipe Club! Today’s theme is St. Patrick’s Day. The required ingredients for this hop included potatoes, pistachios and beer! Want to join the fun? Contact me here!

As I said, this hop’s theme is St. Patrick’s Day.

A few people jumped the gun and helped me pick the ingredients. It was so nice to have the suggestions! Keep them coming!

We ended up with potatoes and beer – to keep it Irish – and pistachios for something green.

ground pisatchios  Pistachio Strawberry Cupcakes {Holiday Recipe Club 3/15}

There were a lot of inspiring Pinterest boards…it was hard to decide on anything.

I was tempted to go crazy with something like green beer, but I couldn’t resist a cupcake recipe.

pistachios and strawberries  200x300 Pistachio Strawberry Cupcakes {Holiday Recipe Club 3/15}    finished cupcakes 200x300 Pistachio Strawberry Cupcakes {Holiday Recipe Club 3/15}    frosted cupcake 200x300 Pistachio Strawberry Cupcakes {Holiday Recipe Club 3/15}

These cupcakes are dense and reminiscent of muffins. The strawberry swiss meringue buttercream is not at all necessary, but a good way to sweeten the cake.

It’s also a great recipe to welcome spring!

What are your plans for St. Patrick’s Day?

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Secret Recipe Club 7/18 – Pistachio Cardamom Whoopie Pies

This is my third post for Secret Recipe Club. This month I was assigned Janis from BiteMeNewEngland.blogspot.com. Interested in joining? Find out more about the Secret Recipe Club here!

I was a little nervous this month. Looking through Janis’s recipes made me wonder if I could find anything sweet! This girl does not seem to have quite as large of a sweet tooth as me. She had many tempting recipes for savory dishes. There are quite a few I want to make for dinner! But after a little looking, I found this gem.

organic orange Secret Recipe Club 7/18   Pistachio Cardamom Whoopie Pies

You know how I have a love of whoopie pies, so how could I pass up such a delicious sounding recipe? Pistachio…cardamom…orange cream cheese frosting… Wouldn’t you stop to look? As soon as I read through the ingredients list the deal was sealed.

This recipe is so fabulous and I am so glad she shared it on her blog. This whoopie pie is unlike any other whoopie pie I have had. The pistachio and cardamom work wonderfully together. And sandwiched with orange cream cheese frosting, genius. These whoopie pies are slightly addicting. Good luck eating just one! [Read more...]