Pistachio Cake with Marsala

Pistachio Cake with Marsala is a traditional Christmas dessert. Your shopping may not be done, but feeding families and friends takes priority. Time to roll up those sleeves and get busy. Submitted by David McCarthy, Australia


  • 1 3/4 cups red glace cherries, quartered
  • 1 cup sultanas
  • 3/4 cup chopped raisins
  • 1 cup mixed peel (candied citrus peel)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp crushed fennel seeds
  • 1 Tbsp of finely grated orange rind (Just the orange not the white pith)
  • 1/2 cup of Marsala
  • 8 ounces (250 grams) of butter
  • 3/4 cup of castor sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/3 cup of shelled pistachio nuts
  • 1 1/2 cups of plain flour
  • 1/4 cup of self raising flour
  • Note: We could add ingredients to decorate the cake but this is such an individual thing it is better to decorate as you see best. I use marzipan and frosting (icing).


Combine fruit, seeds, rinds and Marsala in a large (preferably non-metallic) bowl, cover and stand overnight.

Grease a deep 8 inch (20 cm) cake pan, line base and sides with three layers of baking paper, extending side paper 2 inches (5 cm) above the sides.

Using a food blender or processor, beat the butter and sugar in a medium bowl until it changes to a lighter color.Add eggs one at a time beating it fully into the mixture before adding another. Stir this into the fruit mixture, mix well and then stir in the nuts and flours.

Cook in a slow oven (Slow 300F 150C Gas Mark 2) for two hours.The cake is cooked when you can place a skewer in the center of the cake and it comes out clean.

Cover the cake with foil and allow to cool in the cake pan.

When the pistachio cake is totally cooled down, you can slice the top off to create a flat surface to decorate.


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