I started making this cake years ago when I was running my deli.
I really prefer it to carrot cake and the green of the pistachio slivers running through it make it not only beautiful but delicious. It is lighter because it has an oil base, which keeps it fluffy and moist, rather than a crumbly butter base. The pistachios must be good quality, so please do make sure you use the best you can find.
Pistachio, Zucchini and Lemon Cake
1 cup (250 ml) olive oil
Generous 1 cup (8 oz / 225 g) sugar
1¾ cup (8 oz / 225 g) all-purpose flour
1 heaped tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 tsp ground ginger
Generous 1 cup (6½ oz / 180 g) grated zucchini
1¼ cup (5 oz / 150 g) pistachios, chopped
For the icing
1¼ cup (5 oz /150 g) confectioner’s sugar, sifted
Juice of 1 lemon
Preheat the oven to 400ºF (200ºC). Line an 8-inch (20-cm) cake pan with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, mix together the olive oil, eggs and sugar.
Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and ginger into a separate bowl, then add the sugar and eggs and stir to combine. Now add the zucchini and pistachios and mix together, then transfer the batter to the pan.
Bake the cake for 50–60 minutes until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool for a few minutes in the pan, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the icing, mix the confectioners sugar and lemon juice together to create a smooth texture, then pour over the cooled cake. Serve in lovely slices.
Reprinted with permission from Baladi Palestine,
Joudie Kalla, 2019, Interlink Books, 978-1-62371-981-4, $35 hb, www.interlinkbooks.com.
has been a chef for over 20 years. She trained at Leiths School of Food and Wine, London, and worked in many prestigious restaurants before going on to run her own successful catering business. She opened a Palestinian deli, Baity Kitchen, in London, from 2010–2013 to much acclaim before turning her sights to writing her first bestselling cookbook Palestine on a Plate
. She runs cooking classes, catering events and pop-up supper clubs, and she consults on food projects.