Pistachio Raspberry Cake

You see, every year on December 31, my husband and I cook something delicious

For a long time my husband and I preferred to celebrate New Year in some warm places, like seaside spots, or vice versa we visited perfect winter destinations, it was our tradition.

And then one day we broke this tradition and decided to stay at home. Perhaps, it happened because our friends came to visit us, or maybe we had already spent all our travel budget - it doesn’t matter. That was the year when we just moved to Amsterdam and a lot of our friends visited us. Their visits lasted for two years - we traveled around the Netherlands, wandered through narrow streets and wide beaches, and visited some museums more than once or twice. And then the stream of friends dried up, and, in general, I support them, there are still a million places on earth where I would like to visit.

You may ask: where is the tradition and how does this story relate to the recipe? It's simple, we have started a new tradition! Every New Year, or rather December 31, my husband and I come up with a treat that we cook. We have already prepared ptichye moloko (also known as ptasie mleczko or bird milk) and zephyr (may also be spelled zefir or zephir), and this year we decided to cook something unusual. And, as usual, we spent a lot of time on it. Since a New Year’s treat is always something spontaneous, we used salted pistachios to make cake layers and, of course, it took us plenty of time to peel 600 grams of pistachios. In the process of kneading the dough, a little human, whose heels you may periodically see in the photo, smeared herself with flour, ate plenty of pistachios and made a funny face after tasting raspberries. It sounds cute, but in fact, in the evening she had an allergy, and in most cases, it means late bedding and adventures at night, but this time it was almost all right - just a New Year's miracle. And don’t forget that there is also a hairy friend who was spinning under our feet all evening, begging for sweets. He does it so persistently that with every step you risk either falling on the floor or stepping on someone's fluffy paw…

By the time the Moscow New Year came, we were very tired, and there were still 2 hours left until the Dutch New Year, and we didn't want to miss it. Therefore, we continued without slowing down to do cool things. Because when you run and think that your strength is over, you will fall the moment you stop. Having called and written to almost everyone, we began to set the table, which consisted mainly of what just had to be opened or smeared, you must agree, an ideal housewife (no). As a result, I baked the cake layers deep after midnight from last year's dough, and I had to continue cooking the rest on January 1.

The most difficult and, perhaps, the most delicious cake that I have ever made was born on January 1st. Tender pistachio cake layers, cream cheese frosting, and raspberry jelly are impossible to come off. I hope you’ll enjoy this cake too!


Cake dough:

  • 220 g softened, unsalted butter,
  • 110 g powdered sugar (½ cup and 1 tablespoon),
  • 1 large egg,
  • ½ tsp salt,
  • 220 g shelled pistachios,
    if you use unshelled salted pistachios, then you will need about 600 grams, try to get rid of the skin and, as a result, excess salt,
  • 310 g (2 ⅕ cups) flour.
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Raspberry jelly:

  • 700 g frozen raspberries,
  • 10 g gelatin.
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  • 150 g (⅔ cup) heavy whipping cream (33%),
  • 750 g of cream cheese,
    I like to mix Philadelphia and Mascarpone in a 2 to 1 ratio - 500 g Philadelphia and 250 g Mascarpone,
  • 135 g (1 cup) powdered sugar.
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  • 80 g shelled pistachios,
  • raspberries.
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  • flour for rolling out the dough,
  • baking paper,
  • strainer or sieve,
  • rolling pin,
  • 3 large plates for jelly, you may need only 2, it depends on the number of cake layers,
  • 1 smaller plate for cutting the cake,
  • plastic wrap.


Dough preparation:

The process is similar to pate sucree dough preparation, so check this article for some tips.

  • grind the pistachios,
  • place the butter and the powdered sugar into a big bowl,
  • combine using a wooden spoon until smooth,
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  • in a separate bowl, combine the egg and salt using a fork,
  • add the egg mixture to the butter one,
  • mix again until almost smooth,
  • add ground pistachios and mix until smooth,
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  • add the flour and mix gently, it’s not necessary to mix the dough until completely smooth,
  • sprinkle the countertop with the flour,
  • knead the dough briefly by "rubbing" until the flour is fully covered with the fat from the butter,
  • shape the dough into a flat rectangle,
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  • wrap tightly with plastic wrap and slightly press to flatten and let it chill in place the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.


  • defrost raspberries: in a microwave, on a water bath (bain-marie) or in a saucepan over low heat,
  • to get raspberry syrup simply put defrosted raspberries into a strainer or a sieve and gently press the raspberries with the bottom of a spoon; you'll make about 500 grams of raspberry syrup.
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Preheat the oven to 190 °C.

Baking the cake layers:

  • after the dough has been in the refrigerator for 30 minutes, divide it into 12 parts if the plate you will use for cutting is less than 17 cm in diameter, and divide the dough into 9 parts if the plate is larger,
  • dust the counter and rolling pin lightly with flour,
  • roll the dough out to 3-5 mm thickness; if it breaks, roll the dough out on the baking paper,
    this dough is very fragile, it is much more convenient to roll it out while it is still cold, so while you roll out one cake layer, the rest of the dough should be kept in the refrigerator;
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  • once the dough is rolled out, cut out the cake layer - put a plate on the rolled dough and cut around; remove the dough leftovers, they can be used later,
  • if you roll the dough out on the table - cover the baking sheet with the baking paper and place the cake layer on it; if you roll it out on the paper - put it on the baking sheet,
  • place the baking sheet in the oven preheated to 190 ºC,
    if you can place more cake layers on the baking sheet - bake two or three at once;
    don’t bake on different baking sheets at the same time - the upper one will be browning, while the lower one won't be cooked through;
  • bake for about 5 minutes, the cake layer shouldn’t brown,
  • once done, remove it from the oven and let it stand on the baking sheet for a few minutes - the cake layer are very fragile and it can be broken easily, let it cool down a bit,
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  • put the cooled cake layer on the wire rack, so it doesn’t become wet;
  • repeat this process until you run out of the dough; the dough leftovers can be used to make delicious pistachio cookies.

Raspberry jelly:

  • if there are 12 cake layers, wrap 3 large plates with the plastic wrap in one layer, if there are 9 cake layers - then use 2 plates,
  • put the gelatin sheets in cold water,
  • bring raspberry syrup to a boil and remove from heat,
  • remove the expanded gelatin leaves from the water and gently squeeze out the excess water,
  • put the gelatin in the raspberry syrup and mix, if the syrup is hot, the gelatin will dissolve in a few seconds,
  • pour the raspberry syrup mixed with the gelatin into the plates wrapped in plastic wrap, so that you have about ⅕ syrup (about 100 g) left; you will need it for the frosting,
  • in each of the plates place the cake layer with the bottom (flat) side up and press down slightly,
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  • put the plates in the freezer for at least an hour - the jelly should freeze completely,
    for me the most convenient way is to make a sandwich from plates and cutting boards - put a plate, put a chopping board on top, put another plate on top, etc


  • whip the heavy cream on high speed; as soon as steady peaks appear, stop, otherwise you will get butter,
  • add powdered sugar and cream cheese,
  • mix until smooth,
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  • set aside 3/5 of the frosting (about 600 g) in a separate bowl and put in the refrigerator,
  • add the raspberry syrup mixed with the gelatin to the remaining frosting and mix until smooth,
  • put the raspberry frosting in the refrigerator,
  • the frosting should stay in the refrigerator for at least an hour to stabilize.

Cake decoration:

Grind the pistachios, for decoration you need about 80 g.

Assembling the cake:

  • remove the jelly-cake layers from the freezer and check that the jelly is completely frozen, if not - don’t start assembling the cake,
  • as soon as the jelly is frozen, remove all plates from the freezer and let them stand for 5-10 minutes,
  • take both frosting out of the fridge,
  • in the center of a cake stand or a plate on which you plan to assemble the cake, put half a spoon of the frosting and lightly spread it, it will help to fix the bottom layer and the cake will be easier to assemble,
  • put the cake layer on the cake stand or the plate and top with a layer of raspberry frosting (the frosting layer thickness should be about 3-5 mm),
  • put the second cake layer on the first one and also top with the raspberry frosting,
  • put the third cake layer and top it with the creamy frosting,
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  • carefully cut out the excess jelly by running a knife around the cake layer edge,
  • put the jelly-cake layer with the raspberry jelly down and top with the raspberry frosting,
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  • repeat the same thing with the rest of the layers - two layers with the raspberry frosting and one layer with the creamy frosting and the raspberry jelly,
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  • once done, put the cake and the remaining creamy frosting in the fridge for at least an hour,
    while the cake is in the fridge, make some tea, take pistachio cookies, put some of the remaining raspberry frosting and raspberry jelly on them, and think that the cake will be even tastier ;)
  • take the cake out of the refrigerator and apply final coat with a thicker coat of creamy frosting, starting at the top and working your way downcover,
  • decorate the cake with the grinded pistachios and raspberries,
  • before a delicious tea party, let the cake settle down in the refrigerator for 12 hours, but you can skip this step.
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