Friday, December 31, 2010

Pistachio Cake

I am a big fan of Taylor Swift. In fact, her new album was one of my Christmas gifts which I was rocking to this afternoon on my way to Newton. Although this adoration of mine may seem odd for someone creeping into her late-20s, I just can't not turn up the radio when one of her songs comes on. One of her latest mega-hits (humor me, ok?) is called Mine and it definitely pulls at my heartstrings. This year, one could say, I added an item to my worldly possessions that I can call 'mine.' I added a husband.

Even with the challenges of law school, living apart, and what-will-our-future-hold discussions, we had a bright and shining moment on October 9th when we married each other. The weekend was wonderful -- filled with our closest family and friends. We are still shocked at how perfect the weekend was and can't believe we (along with everyone else involved) managed to pull it off so flawlessly. These memories will keep us going through whatever struggles we face together.

Robbie's birthday is at the beginning of December and inevitably always hits during exams. One can imagine how this makes one's birthday nonexistent when you are on your 14th straight hour of Jurisprudence studies. Last year I started the tradition of making him a homemade birthday cake to devour after his exams when we can really focus on celebrating his birthday. This year was no different. I asked him to name a cake he wanted me to make and his response? "Pistachio."

I had to do a little digging because pistachio is not your classic chocolate or vanilla option. But my mom mentioned a recipe that was very popular in the 1970s involving cake mix, pistachio flavored jell-o pudding and dream whip. Sure enough, I did a little research and discovered it. I adapted it a little because my grocery store did not have Dream Whip (although I went into three more in another city the next weekend and saw it immediately . . . I think that was a scenario in an Alanis Morrisette song . . .). I used cool whip but this cake was still very delicious. The batter was almost gummy (geletinous perhaps?) and the icing was light and perfectly complimented the super-duper-moistness of the cake. Did I mention the cake comes out this cool shade of green?

I hope that the cake added some brightness to his dismal first-of-December, and we both acknowledged that this was his last birthday to fall within an exam period (hopefully) so things are already looking up. And with a new year ahead of us, I anticipate any uncertainties turning into excitement as we finally transition into living in one location, together, and hanging out for the next forever.

Pistachio Cake
Adapted from Two Tiny Kitchens' Pistachio Cupcake recipe

1 pkg white cake mix
1 pkg instant pistachio pudding mix
1 c. oil
3 eggs
1 c. club soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients and beat at medium speed for about 5 minutes. Pour batter into greased bundt cake pan and bake according to the directions on the back of the cake mix box.


2 regular sized tubs of cool whip (I used light and it worked just fine.)
1 pkg instant pistachio pudding mix

Combine cool whip and pudding mix. Beat with whisk until thoroughly mixed. Spread on cake. Top with salted pistachio kernels for an added decoration and crunch. Refrigerate.

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