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Cardamom Cake with Coffee Glaze

Love. Friends. Flowers. Cocktails.  These are a few of my favorite things and thankfully, I was able to indulge in all of them this weekend at the wedding of my friends, Mike and Kelli Holloway.  They had a beautiful garden wedding at the Barclay Villa in Angier, NC that was orchestrated by K Dream Effects. 

Being surrounded my so many gorgeous flowers made me want to go home and bake something that would capture the essence of spring.  It didn't take me long to find exactly what I was looking for.  The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Dessert Cookbook is an amazing collection of family recipes that is conveniently organized my season.  Everything in there looks so amazing that I may just bake my way through the entire book this year.  Actually, I will do that, so y'all have to hold me to it.  When I saw the Cardamom Cake with Coffee Glaze, I knew that I had to make it.  Cardamom has just an exotic aroma - sort of floral, kind of minty, and a little citrusy - all of which are on my spring must-have list. I was intrigued.  Then, I saw that the recipe also called for pistachios (which I LOVE) and coffee (one of my favorite flavors in the world despite not being a coffee drinker).  Check. Mate. 

You'll love this cake, because all of the complex flavors work so well together.  The cake is light and moist, with a little crunch due to the pistachios.  And despite all of the exotic flavors involved, this cake is super easy to make. 

Cardamom Cake with Coffee Glaze

Recipe Adapted from The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Dessert Cookbook



For the cake

  • Softened butter for the pan
  • ~ 1/4 cup finely chopped pistachios for the pan
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 1/3 cups cake flour (sifted, spooned into the cup and leveled off)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup pistachios
  • 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sour cream

For the glaze

  • 2/3 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon milk, plus more if necessary


  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.  Butter a 10- or 12- cup Bundt pan and sprinkle with the ground pistachios.  Then, coat the pan with cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, cardamom, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together.  
  3. Next, in a food processor, combine the 1/2 cup of pistachios and 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar and process until finely ground.
  4. Using an stand mixer, beat the butter and 1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy.  
  5. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs and vanilla.  Gradually add the egg mixture to the butter mixture until very light in texture.  Then beat in the pistachio-sugar mixture. 
  6. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add in the flour mixture and sour cream, beginning and ending with flour. 
  7. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a tester come out clean with some most crumbs attached.  It took me exactly 55 minutes.  Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack, then run a spatula around the edge to loosen the cake before inverting the cake on a plate. 
  8. In a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners' sugar, espresso powder, and cocoa powder.  Add the milk and stir until it reaches a drizzling consistency.  If 1 tablespoon isn't enough, add a drop or two more until it is. Drizzle over the cake.

Stay sweet!