Quince and pistachio cake

With hints of cardamom and orange, this rustic cake is delicious for a winter afternoon tea or dessert. Cardamom is one of the world's most expensive spices; it has a distinctive aromatic, sweetly rich flavour and is widely available.

  • 1 hr 15 mins cooking
  • Serves 10
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Quince and pistachio cake
  • 3/4 cup (110g) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) orange juice
  • 1 cup (250ml) water
  • 2 cardamom pods, crushed slightly
  • 3 medium quinces (990g), peeled, cored and sliced
  • 90 gram (3 ounces) butter, softened
  • 2 teaspoon grated orange rind
  • 1 cup (220g) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup (75g) self-raising flour
  • 1 cup (150g) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) sour cream
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) orange juice
  • 1/2 cup (75g) coarsely chopped roasted pistachios


Quince and pistachio cake
  • 1
    Combine sugar, juice, the water and cardamom in medium saucepan; stir over heat, without boiling, until sugar is dissolved. Add quince; simmer, uncovered, about 1¼ hours until quince is soft and liquid almost absorbed; cool. Remove cardamom pods.
  • 2
    Beat butter, rind and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer until lighter in colour. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until well combined. Stir in sifted flours and soda with combined cream and juice in two batches. Fold in nuts.
  • 3
    Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F.
  • 4
    Grease deep 22cm (8½ inch) round cake pan; line base with baking (parchment) paper. Arrange two-thirds of the quince over the base of the pan. Blend remaining quince until smooth. Gently fold quince puree into pistachio cake batter to give a rippled effect. Spread cake batter over quince in cake pan. Bake cake in oven about 1¼ hours.
  • 5
    Stand cake in pan 15 minutes before turning, top-side up, onto a wire rack. Cake can be served hot or at room temperature, with cream, custard or ice-cream.


Try replacing the pistachios with toasted slivered almonds.

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