Pistachio and Cardamom Pound Cake

Makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:
1 cup raw, shelled pistachios
1 stick plus 5 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cardamom (preferably freshly ground)
1/4 tsp salt
3 large eggs
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup whole milk

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Place pistachios on a baking sheet and toast till fragrant in the oven, about 5 mins. Cool and then pulse in a food processor till they're very fine (don't over-process or you'll end up with pistachio butter, which may sound yummy but it's not what you need here!). Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 350 F.

2. Grease an 8.5" x 4.5" loaf pan with 1/2 tbsp of butter. Line the bottom with a long strip of parchment paper, with overhanging sides that you can use to later remove the cake from the pan. Grease the top of the parchment with another 1/2 tbsp of butter and set aside.

3. Whisk the flour, baking powder, cardamom and salt together. Crack the eggs into a separate bowl, whisk in the vanilla, and set aside.

4. Using an electric mixer, cream the remaining butter and sugar until they are light and airy. Drizzle in the egg mixture a little at a time, while the machine is running, and scraping down the bowl in between if necessary.

5. Alternate adding the flour and milk, starting and ending with the flour, and mixing until the batter is just combined. Fold the pistachios into the batter with a spatula.

6. Transfer batter to the loaf pan. Bake for about 45 mins, or until a cake tester inserted into the cake's center comes out clean. Let the cake cool in its pan for 10 mins. Then take it out and put it on a cooling rack for another hour. Slice and serve as is, or with tea or coffee. Wrap the rest up in saran wrap or place in an airtight container - stores really well like this for several days.

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