Sunday 9 October 2016

'Monsters' Pistachio-Lemon Chiffon Cake

My ‘monsters’ Pistachio-Lemon Chiffon Cake!

This is sooo soo good! I fell in love when Munira posted her Pistachio-lemon sour cream pound cake. The night she posted her recipe, I actually dreamt of grinding pistachios and making a super light chiffon version in my sleep lol! Those who know me, know that I often get my ideas for my cakes through dreams (eg my 6-flavour rainbow hearts chiffon). It also came at a time I was searching for a simple cake to make for a 'monster' party. So I woke up, bought some pistachios, rolled up my sleeves, put on my head band (just kidding =p), and got to work!

The verdict: the rich taste of pistachios combined with a very soft and fluffy cake - the work is well-worth it!! Translated to our singlish - Die die must try! =p

Very soft texture with lovely pistachio taste

Pistachio Lemon Chiffon Cake (18cm/20cm chiffon tube pan)
4 egg yolks
33g castor sugar
52g vegetable/corn oil 
52g water
6g vanilla extract
Zest of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp baking powder, sifted
39g ground roasted pistachios (from 42g pistachios without shell)
39g prima cake flour, sifted
Few drops of PME natural coloring, Juniper green

5 egg whites
59g castor sugar
¼ tsp cream of tartar

1. Prepare 42g roasted pistachios without shell. Peel off the outer brown covering. Place the pistachios into blender and grind till fine paste (the powder becomes paste due to the oil from the pistachio). Sieve through mesh.
*42g pistachios makes around 39g pistachio paste for me. 
*You can also use store-bought pistachio paste but depending on the purity, you may need to increase your cake flour corresspondingly.

42g pistachios, with brown layer roughly peeled

After being grounded into fine paste

2. Prepare lemon zest by using a fine scraper to gently scrap the outing yellow covering of the lemon, being careful to omit the white parts that may be bitter.

3. Preheat oven to 160°C. *Optional: I used steam baking, i.e. I placed a pan of water under the lowest rack before preheating – to control oven temperature and for moister texture.

4. Whisk egg yolks with castor sugar till pale and light.

5. Add in oil, then water and vanilla extract and whisk well

6. Add in sifted cake flour and whisk till no lumps are found. Then whisk in lemon zest and pistachio paste and mix till mixture is uniform and forms a smooth batter

7. Prepare meringue:

a. In a grease-free, dry metal bowl, using electric mixer, whisk egg whites with cream of tartar till frothy.

b. Add in ½ castor sugar for meringue and whisk at high speed till soft peaks form.

c. Add in rest of the castor sugar for meringue and whisk till firm peaks form, or just the point of stiff peak.

8. Pour the batter into an ungreased 7-inch chiffon tube pan. Gently tap on counter top to remove air bubbles.

9. Bake at 160°C for 15 min, 140°C for 30-35 min, or until skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean. **If you use steam baking, you may need to bake for a few more minutes.

10. Invert pan to cool on a wire rack completely.

11. Unmould the chiffon cake by hand (see video tutorial ‘Hand unmoulding Chiffon cakes for a clean finishing’). 

Freshly unmoulded cake - nice and tall!

Side profile of the final cake (after hiding a surprise in the center and covering it up with chiffon sheet cake cut-outs). Isn't it cute? =p

Hope you will enjoy the yummy nutty flavour and light fluffy cake!

With lots of love,

Some updates: Popular will be restocking by end of new week, but it's available at Kinokuniya and Times as well. It's in Kinokuniya bestsellers. Very grateful for your support!

Upcoming Kinokuniya book event (more details in link)


  1. Hi Susanne, I baked this cake yesterday and it tasted really good! The only thing is the cake shrunk a bit near the end of baking time, and also shrunk slightly from one side of the pan when unmoulded. Cld it be because I overbaked it (150 deg C for 50 mins), and/or unmoulded it too quickly when it wasn't fully cooled? Thanks!

    1. Hi, yes if you unmould too quickly before it is fully cooled, you could cause the shrinkage. Thanks!

  2. Thanks Susanne for the reply!! Really appreciate it :)

  3. Thanks for sharing this informative information about pistachio extract with us. It's very helpful. Keep it up!

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