Tuesday, 23 April 2013

The Last Crusade - Arabian-styled Chocolate, Fig and Pistachio Cake

It's time again to put these glasses aside, hang the suit into the cupboard and get the leather jacket, hat and bullwhip ready. Well, usually I don't wear a leather jacket and a hat for baking, but sometimes you have to whip things up. By the way, now it has been quite some time someone called me Professor or Doctor, but that doesn't matter now.
Anyway, I didn't want to call this post 'Dr Jekyll and Mr Cake'.
Just remember: "We do not follow maps to buried treasures and X never ever marks the spot." We are just baking an Arabian-styled Chocolate, Fig and Pistachio Cake (note: Arabian-styled is just for the atmosphere and for a reason revealed later).

This now is a 'leap of faith' ... "Only in the leap from the oven shall it prove its worth." Kind of. Let's start our cake adventure ...

What we need (apart from the leather jacket, hat and bullwhip):
3 eggs
100 g sugar
300 g spelt flour
2 tsp baking powder
100 ml olive oil
1 tbs rosewater
40 g dark chocolate chunks (feel free to use more)
Juice of 3 lime
3 tbs honey (feel free to use more)
100 g dried soft figs, chopped up
2 tbs water
50 g pistachios, roughly chopped up

The quest begins:
Originally, the whole idea was, to bake something with chocolate and honey and ... soon things got out of hand. Such things happen, when the mind gets the chance to roam freely (ah, I hate those long drives to work).
Get yourself the average round cake tin, line it with baking parchment and - just to make sure - lightly oil it.
To the cake batter...
Cream the eggs with the sugar ... time for some whipping. Then sift in the flour and the baking powder. Pour in the oil and rosewater and while you're at it, toss in the chocolate chunks as well.
While your oven is heating up, spoon your batter together completely ... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 ... "Ten. X marks the spot." The marked spot is first the cake tin where the cake better goes and then secondly the oven where the cake tin goes (together with the cake batter ... obviously). 35 minutes shall be the time for the cake to remain in the oven to prove its worth.
Do you believe? I mean, will it be a nice cake? I mean not 'nice' in the 'sense' of 'okay', but ... will it taste good?
As the cake comes from the oven we are far from being through. Let the cake take its time to cool down.
Meanwhile we whip up some kind of lime, fig and honey syrup. Cast those ingrediens together with the two tbs of water into a saucepan and heat it up until most of the liquids have been evaporated. Spoon this over the cake. Time for some chopped up pistachios. They follow ...

Now you could go on and enjoy your cake. Really? Yes ... although we could have used a little bit less lime juice and a bit more honey ... hm ... eh ... maybe - that is in case you have - you could also use more chocolate. Obviously, 40 g chocolate can't be enough. 100 g would sound better. Whatsoever, I did what I did and next time there would be the chance to change it.
Before we proceed we still want to have a closer look at the cake ...

Is that close enough? Well, you can always go and whip up some cream and throw on a dollop of it. 

Now we go back to the roots ... eh ... to the original reason we started all this ... We Should Cocoa #32 featuring chocolate and honey.

Hm ... I just noticed, I had all the ingredients here I got rid of some figs, limes and pistachios. Good job! You could call this quite a deal of money saving and ... "You can never have too much cake:-)" Therefore, here is another cake for Credit Crunch Munch from Fuss Free Flavours and Fab Food 4 All  ... right, not Fab Foods 4 All :-) 

It isn't over yet. We already know, that I'm not a food wasting kind of guy. Due to that fact and because of figs being fruits this post enters also Elizabeth's Kitchen's No Waste Food Challenge - Fruit.

For a moment you thought now, it would be over, but wrongly concluded so. I made this all from scratch and with a lot of luv. So it would be a shame not to enter this cake to Javelin Warrior's Made with Love Mondays.


We nearly forgot. The other reason - apart from the atmosphere - for calling this cake Arabian-styled. You may call me cheeky now (or crazy or ... make a suggestion), but the AlphaBakes April 2013 has the letter "A" for ... Arabian-styled Chocolate, Fig and Pistachio Cake.

Give me just a moment. I need to think a bit ...
Yes, I reckon that's all. Really? I guess so!
Ah, just to make sure that no one starts to panic again. The title of this post isn't suggesting that this is my last cooking adventure here. In fact the post doesn't really have anything to do with any kind of crusade. It's just a title ... just a crazy title.
By the way, should I change the blog title to "CCC - Crazy Chef Chris"? Nah, I don't think so. See thee!


  1. This cake sounds delicious and I love the pairing of chocolate with pistachios and figs! And the styling is genius with the Indiana Jones esque hat... Thanks so much for sharing!

    1. Somehow this is already part 3 of Indy cooking (1. Raiders of the lost cake / 2. The pasta salad of doom).

  2. Chris, this sounds like a fabulous cake - please can you serve me a slice?

  3. This sounds like a delicious flavour combination. Very exotic! Thank you for entering it into the No Waste Food Challenge!

    1. I say thank you for having me around. As in this case, sometimes things come over me. I look around and notice what I have on stock and then ...

  4. Brilliant post! Love the style of writing, the photos, the cake,... everything! I'll take the leap of faith and accept this to AlphaBakes - thanks for entering.

    1. Thank you very much for having me and the cake in for AlphaBakes. I'm glad you like it.

  5. Chris I love it, you had me in stitches - Arabian styled cake indeed! And no wonder things started to get out of hand with that jacket, hat and bullwhip. It sounds a wonderful cake, such lovely flavours and in a way having a little less chocolate allows the other flavours to shine - perhaps. Thank you for another fantastic entry to We Should Cocoa.

    1. From time to time it's not bad, when things get out of hand ... as far as such things are concerned. Well, other things might be or get out of hands, too. But, hey, why worry! A piece of cake won't harm or rather might do the opposite. We Should Cocoa really got me into that good mood again. If that isn't something. Thank you for being out there!


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