There’s an extra special cake coming your way today. This Blueberry Pistachio Layer cake is a homemade white cake layered with a fresh blueberry frosting and covered with white chocolate ganache and pistachios.
I honestly never would have thought to pair pistachios together with a cake like this, but the lightly salted nuts offer a little bit of crunch on top and are a perfect match for the blueberries.
This cake comes from a very special cookbook by Mimi Council of Mimi’s Cookie Bar. Mimi is kinda of amazing, she resides in Mammoth Lakes California and owns an organic and all natural bakery. Years ago I interviewed Mimi. She’s worked her butt off to open a store front, and it’s just the cutest little shop and I’ve never left there with less than a dozen cookies. I stop in there whenever I am in Mammoth. New flash, she also ships and offers a wide variety of vegan and gluten free options.
Mimi recently self-published two cookbooks: Mimi’s Organic Cakes and Cookies and Mimi’s Organic Vegan & Gluten Free Sweets. I am so thrilled to be telling you all about her book, and sharing this recipe today.
Mimi’s creations are not only gorgeous, but the variety of flavors and desserts offered in this book is stellar. It was REALLY hard to pick a recipe to share with you. The Blueberry Pistachio Cake is from the Vegan and Gluten Free cookbook, but I chose to make a non-gluten free version of the cake. All of the measurements in Mimi’s book use gram measurements, just like you would in a bakery.
Let’s break down this cake. It’s a three-layer made-from-scratch white cake. The cake uses a method of whipped egg whites that are then folded into the cake batter. I don’t traditionally make cakes this way, but it’s really quite simple. You should whip the egg whites first, and then set them aside. To fold them into the batter, use a spatula and gently turn the batter oven from the bottom to the top continuously until it’s well mixed.
The original recipe for this cake was made using gluten-free flour using 6-inch cake pans. The first time I made this cake, I made it with all-purpose gluten free flour, but using 8-inch pans. I didn’t care for the texture of the cake, but I directly relate that to the flour I used. In my experience with gluten free flour, the brand really makes a difference. I prefer King Arthur Flour’s all-purpose GF mix, but I was not able to find it.
The second time I made this cake, I doubled the original recipe and made it with regular flour instead of gluten free. That is the recipe you will find below. This allowed me to make the 3-layer cake that you see here. I do prefer the non-gluten free version myself, but it’s always nice to have an option to make something gluten free.
Then comes the frosting. Boy this is a good one. You guys know how much I love a good frosting. The recipe starts with a fresh blueberry compote, which is a sauce made on the stovetop using blueberries, granulated sugar and water. You will boil this down until it reduces and thickens slightly, then press it through a fine sieve and cool it completely. Since it needs to cool completely, I’ve listed this as the first step in the recipe.
One thing you’ll notice is that the blueberry frosting bleeds a little bit into the white cake, don’t worry, that’s totally normal as you can see from my photos. This is because I used the whole batch of blueberry sauce in this frosting. It’s quite divine.
You don’t need a special occasion to share this cake with your family and friends.
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- For the blueberry syrup:
- 12oz (340g) blueberries
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup water
- For the cake:
- 6 large egg whites
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 ¼ cups granulated sugar (424 g)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup light sour cream
- ½ cup milk
- 2 ¾ c flour (340 g)
- 1 teaspoons seat salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- For the frosting:
- 2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 8 cups powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
- Prepared blueberry sauce
- For the topping:
- 1 cup white chocolate chips
- ¾ to 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- ¼ cup pistachios for garnish
- For the blueberry sauce: Start with the blueberry syrup. In a medium saucepan, combine blueberries, granulated sugar and water. Simmer over medium heat until the sauce is reduced by half, this should take about 20 minutes. Sauce with thicken as it reduces.
- Strain the sauce through a fine sieve, using a spatula to push the sauce through the sieve. Place the juice in the refrigerator until it’s completely cool.
- For the cake: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease three 8-inch pans and line with parchment paper.
- Using the metal bowl of your stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Remove whipped eggs whites from the bowl and set aside.
- Change to the paddle attachment and combine unsalted butter, granulated sugar and vanilla extract. Cream together for 2-3 minutes until well combined.
- Add the sour cream and milk to the mixing bowl and beat at a low speed until all ingredients are well combined, scraping down the bowl as needed.
- In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking soda and stir to combine.
- With the mixer on a low speed, slowly add the flour mixture to the bowl and continue mixing until combined, scraping down the bowl as needed.
- Using a spatula, fold the egg whites into the batter, turning the batter over gently until the egg white are well combined. This may take a little elbow grease, but do not mix vigorously or you will deflate the egg whites.
- Divide the batter evenly between the three cake pans. Bake at 350°F for 18-22 minutes, rotating the cakes in the oven halfway through to ensure even baking. To check for doneness, insert a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, your cake is done. Allow the cake to cool completely.
- For the frosting: Cut the butter into pieces. Using the paddle attachment, whip the butter for 3-4 minutes, scraping down the bowl occasionally. Beat until butter looks light in color.
- Add 4 cups powdered sugar, one cup at a time and mix on low speed until incorporated into butter. The frosting will start to thicken.
- Begin to alternate in the blueberry sauce and heavy whipping cream while alternating in additional cups of powdered sugar until all the powdered sugar, heavy cream and blueberry sauce have been added. Continue beating until all ingredients are combined and then beat it at a high speed for 1 minute to whip some additional air into the frosting.
- To build the cake: Even out the top of the cake by cutting off the dome using a serrated knife.
- Place a dollop of frosting on the bottom of the cake plate and place the bottom layer of cake on top. The frosting will help prevent the cake from sliding.
- In order to create even layers, I use a piping bag fitted with an open round tip, or simply cut off the end of the piping bag. I also highly suggest using a lazy Suzan to rotate the cake as you work.
- Fill the first layer of frosting by using your piping bag and pipe from the outside edge into the center. Gently spread the frosting with an offset spatula to fill in the gaps.
- Place the next layer of cake on top and repeat the above instructions to fill the layer of frosting.
- For the top layer of cake, place it inverted, so the bottom of the cake is actually the top, creating a nice and smooth top edge.
- Proceed to add your crumb coat by adding a cup of frosting to the top of the cake and gently spread out to the edges and down the sides. Use the leftover frosting in your piping bags to fill in the cracks between the layers.
- Using an offset spatula or icing smoother, wipe away the excess frosting, leaving you just enough to coat the outside of the cake. Do not mix your crumb coating frosting back into your icing if it has cake debris in it. Refrigerate the cake for 15-20 minutes to allow the crumb coat to harden.
- Remove the cake from the refrigerator and proceed to the remaining frosting to the top and edges of the cake. To get a nice smooth edge, use your offset spatula and icing smoother to wipe away excess frosting.
- Take the extra frosting and pipe florets on top of the cake.
- For the ganache: In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the white chocolate and heavy whipping cream. Microwave at 50 percent powder for 30 seconds at a time, and stir after each 30 seconds. Repeat until the chocolate is melted and smooth. The white chocolate ganache should run smoothly off your spoon. Add additional heavy whipping cream if needed to make the ganache thinner.
- Drizzle the white chocolate down the sides and over the top of the cake.
- Garnish with crushed pistachios.
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