Pistachio & Coconut Layer Cake

To me, pistachios are the most elegant type of nuts. The subtle shade of green they add to desserts is just beautiful and the delicate flavor they add to each dish is just divine.

Now, the addition of coconut to the pistachio works beautifully in this recipe; the two ingredients combined bring out a truly beautiful & unique flavor. And the hint of jam in the filling creates a wonderful twist.

Aesthetically, Layer Cakes are meant to look rustic and I find them extremely attractive! The blocks of piled cake layers oozing with filling makes me salivate!

Once you take a bite of this one, you'll taste the moist buttery cake, creamy pistachio coconut custard, and that surprise hint of jam.

Pistachio & Coconut Layer Cake


Pistachio & Coconut Layer CakeCake:

2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
⅓ cup ground pistachios
⅓ cup coconut powder
225g unsalted butter, room temperature
1 ¾ cups sugar
4 eggs, room temperature
1 cup milk, room temperature

Pistachio & Coconut Crème Patisserie:

150ml cream
150ml milk
1 tablespoon coconut powder
1 tablespoon ground pistachios
45g sugar
15g all purpose flour
4 egg yolks


Jar of store-bought or homemade Blackcurrant jam (Or alternatively, you can use any kind of jam you like)


Preheat oven to 175C.  Butter a 6-inch round cake tin.

To make the cake:

Sift all the dry ingredients into a bowl, add the pistachios and coconut, and set aside.

Beat the butter and sugar in a mixer until fluffy and light, and then drizzle in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Begin by adding the flour mixture and milk in turns, alternating between the two.

Keep mixing until just incorporated.

Pour the mixture into the buttered cake tin.*

Allow the cake to bake for about an hour, or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean, and then allow it to cool completely before slicing the layers.

To make the crème patisserie:

Heat the milk, cream, coconut and pistachio in a pan until the mixture boils, then remove and allow it to cool for around 15 minutes.

Whisk the eggs, sugar, and flour in a bowl. Slowly add the cream mixture into the eggs, while whisking, then return to the pan and let simmer over a gentle heat.

Keep stirring gently for about 4 minutes and you will notice that the texture has become thicker, like a custard. Once you reach that phase, place in a bowl, cover and allow it to cool before using.

Pistachio & Coconut Layer Cake

To assemble:

Place one layer of cake on a plate, spread a thin layer of jam on top of it, then top it with the crème patisserie.

Place the second layer on top, and repeat the same process.

Finally, place the third layer on top, spread with jam, top it with crème patisserie and garnish with ground pistachios.


*Note: You can pour the mixture evenly into three baking tins to bake the layers, or you can pour them into one tin and then slice them evenly into three layers. It all depends on your preference. I’ve done it both ways and they work fine!

– Recipe and photos by Shaikha Al Ali

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