This is a post about a cake that is a little out of ordinary, at least in our kitchen. The base flour is a mix of all-purpose and semolina, a form of durum wheat commonly used in pasta. Semolina has a high gluten ratio so it creates a strong bind. Honestly, I don't know what the heck that equates to in a cake other than a very sturdy dough. I have made one other cake with semolina and am fascinated by its density.
Anyways. What attracted me to this cake was the pistachio. When done correctly, pistachio is one of my favorite gelato flavors (thank you Atelier Ortega). Kissed with honey and little lemon zest, this recipe held promises of good things!
Fortunately, I am happy to report that it fulfilled its end of the bargain. Because of the semolina, it has a solid and dense cake base. They key is to poke it all over while it's hot out of the oven to maximize absorption of a honey based syrup drizzled all over. It reminded me of baklava without the layers of phyllo. The end result is finely grainy and nutty dessert that is a pistachio lovers dream come true.
Now keep in mind- this sort of cake is not for everyone so know your audience. Upon first bite, a coworker asked for the recipe and raved all afternoon about how good it tasted. Personally, I gnawed on a slice throughout an entire day. It had a Mediterranean vibe that gave me warm fuzzies.
My standard measure, however, is how much the husband eats: he did not destroy it. Quite frankly, the nutella and oreo monster seemed a touch indifferent. I could tell he would have preferred the standard fare of cookies and pudding. Note... this is a person who does not care for baklava nor figs - gasp! I hope that provides a measure for the right crowd this cake requires and does not deter you from giving it a try! Again, it's about knowing your audience.
For the full recipe, check out the Semolina Cake with Pistachios and Honey post on Fool Proof Living!