I’ve decided about this already some months ago. Until I wont’t be able to properly celebrate this big milestone bday in a proper way, I won’t turn older.
Today, we are more or less in the same situation of one year ago. It feels like one year has passed but we are not moving forward much. That’s a strange feeling. Yet, in spite of the limited things we are allow to do, I can call myself lucky to be surrounded by wonderful people who make days like these so special.
After months, I dressed up, put some nice makeup on and it felt good. Even just to talk to my Italian family and my friends over Facetime, and have a nice dinner with my Dutch extended family at home.
Of course, as tradition calls, I spent quite some time in the kitchen bakign my bday cake. As this is the Easter weekend, I opted for a themed-cake and prepared the Italian typical Colomba with a bit more sophisticated twist: the dough with a crunchy note of pistachios, a filling of lemon pastry cream, and a nice top of pistachio glaze. Love this one.
COLOMBA AL PISTACCHIO E LIMONE
Italian traditional Easter Colomba cake with pistachios and lemon
For the cake (dove-shape 750 gr or baking tin 20cm diameter)
300 gr flour “00” type
90 gr sunflower oil
170 gr almond milk (or regular milk)
150 gr browns sugar
1 lemon zest
1 orange zest
15 gr baking powder
20 gr finely chopped pistachos
For the lemon pastry cream
2 egg yolks
40 gr corn starch
60 gr sugar
5 gr vanilla sugar
250 ml almond milk (or regular milk)
For the pistachios glaze
200 – 300 white chocolate
80 – 70 ml fresh liquid (to whip) cream for cakes
80 gr pistachios paste (crema al pistacchio) – if you live abroad, you most likely will find it in specialized stores (for the Dutchies, you can find it at Dille & Kamille)
20 gr finely chopped pistachios
Prepare the cake
For this cake, you’ll do all steps using an electric mixer.
Separate the egg whites from the egg yolks.
Whisk the yolk with the sugar, the lemon zest and orange zest. Then, add the oil, milk, flour and baking powder, while keep whisking.
Whisk the egg whites until spongy and then incorporate them in the batter using a spatula. Add the pistachios finely chopped.
Spread the batter on a 750 gr dove-shape cake tin or 20cm regular baking pan (remember to spray with non-stick cooking product and cover the bottom with greaseproof paper).
Cook in preheated oven 180°C for 40 minutes and you might need to cover the cake with aluminum foil after 10 minutes as the top the cake tend to brown very soon. Check with a wooden stick – if it comes out of the cake clean, it’s ready. Let it cool down completely.
Prepare the lemon pastry cream and fill the cake.
Preparing the cream like I did here. When the cream is cold, get the cake and make some holes on the top of it using the bottom of a wooden spoon. Remove the extra dough and fill the holes with the cream using a sac-à-poche.
Prepare the pistachios glaze and decorate the cake
Melt the white chocolate in a pan or at bain–marie. Then, low the heat and add the liquid cream for cakes and the pistachio paste. Stir with energy for a couple of minutes, then pour the glaze in a bowl and stir until all ingredients are well combined, and the glaze is smooth. This will also help with cooling down the glaze a bit. Don’t wait too much otherwise it will start to thicken as it gets colder.
Pour the glaze on the top of the cake and decorate with the finely chopped pistachios.