#37 Watergate Cake with Impeachment Frosting

The name of this cake made me think that it was peach flavored; impeachment frosting. However, it is all pistachio. I think the only thing that makes this tie into the Watergate Scandal is that pistachio flavor was apparently big in the 70’s. So there you have it. I still have a hard time reading impeachment without thinking it is a peach-flavored frosting, which by the way I don’t think would taste very good with pistachio.

I have a lot to comment on this cake.
For one, pistachios; to find unsalted pistachios is very difficult, and when I DID find them, they were about $8 for 7 oz in the shell. I needed 7 unshelled unsalted pistachios so I had to buy two bags. That’s $16 for ONE ingredient, about $1.99 per ounce, shelled. Crazy. If I had ordered them on amazon I would’ve found not only unsalted but RAW and shelled pistachios which I think would have been better (and a lot cheaper at $0.84 per ounce), but I didn’t have time to wait for a shipped ingredient.
Secondly, food processors; the flaw in my food processor is certainly not the fault of the recipe, but to make this cake it would have been best if I had had a very good quality food processor, and I don’t. The one I have came with my blender, which is also not great, and both have broken parts.
Thirdly, caramelizing: the recipe says to caramelize some of the pistachios and gives very good directions and helpful tips. I have made caramel from this book at least twice with no problems at all and this time I went against my instincts and it was my downfall. When a recipe says “a very light amber color” in regards to making caramel, it means barely not white with a slight tinge of yellow. I waited too long to add the pistachios and it ended up candying them rather than caramelizing them. The sugar crystalized big time and it was a big mess.
Fourthly, ah well; the faults of my experience with this cake (aside from the cost of the pistachios) ended up working out anyway. It wasn’t perfect, but they cake still tasted great so it wasn’t a disappointment in the end, which made me very happy considering how much $$ I had put into it. It had darned well better turn out good at that price.

Pudding ingredients (always make pudding first)

Pudding ingredients (always make pudding first)

Pistachios and sugar

Pistachios and sugar

processed

processed

a little too chunky although if I had kept going it would've turned into a paste

a little too chunky although if I had kept going it would’ve turned into a paste

pudding ingredients, measured out

pudding ingredients, measured out

Heating the pistachio + half n half mixture

Heating the pistachio + half n half mixture

yolks and corn starch

yolks and corn starch

some of the cream with the yolk mixture

some of the cream with the yolk mixture

back into the pan, at about 3 minutes cooking.

back into the pan, at about 3 minutes cooking.

10 minutes of whisking...

10 minutes of whisking…

20 minutes...

20 minutes…

30...

30…

40...(starting to look like guacamole)

40…(starting to look like guacamole)

50...

50…

1 hour.

1 hour.

The directions said to wait until it had thickened a bit and had boiled for a minute. I never saw any boiling, and probably should've stopped at 40 minutes (I'm pretty sure puddings have taken 30 in the past for me). It took me another 30 minutes just to get it through the sieve (no thanks to my sad excuse for a food processor).

The directions said to wait until it had thickened a bit and had boiled for a minute. I never saw any boiling, and probably should’ve stopped at 30 minutes (I’m pretty sure puddings have taken 30 in the past for me). It took me another 30 minutes just to get it through the sieve (no thanks to my sad excuse for a food processor and all the pistachio chunks it left me).

This was the result; a very overcooked pudding. :(

This was the result through the sieve; a very overcooked pudding. 😦

Cake ingredients

Cake ingredients

whisked dry goods

whisked dry goods

"pudding"

“pudding”

butter and sugar

butter and sugar

with oil and all lightened up

with oil and all lightened up

after the egg yolks

after the egg yolks

After adding the dry goods, the milk, and the pudding.

After adding the dry goods, the milk, and the pudding.

In the oven

In the oven

Baked

Baked

Frosting ingredients

Frosting ingredients

Whipped mascarpone and heavy cream

Whipped mascarpone and heavy cream

1/3 added to the pistachio pudding to lighten it up

1/3 added to the pistachio pudding to lighten it up

All of the mascarpone and pistachio pudding combined (Impeachment frosting).

All of the mascarpone and pistachio pudding combined (Impeachment frosting).

2 layers frosted

2 layers frosted

DSCF4696

caramelizing ingredients

caramelizing ingredients

My not-so-caramelized candied pistachios.

My not-so-caramelized candied pistachios.

Fully frosted cake

Fully frosted cake

IMG_2289 IMG_2290

Served with the candied pistachios

Served with the candied pistachios

Despite all of my issues while making this cake it turned out deliciously. I really really liked this one. It didn’t have a strong nutty taste, but was creamy and light with just a lovely taste. Next time I will: be much wiser with my pudding, hopefully have a better food processor, buy unsalted pistachios online, and remember to trust my instincts with caramel. 🙂

Here’s a little baby George for you, enjoy 🙂

DSCF4639 DSCF4647 DSCF4648 IMG_2284

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3 Responses to #37 Watergate Cake with Impeachment Frosting

  1. Kathy says:

    Man first time I’ve looked at your blog. YOU are hard core cake making! scrolled all the way through the pics just to see George photos though i’ll be honest. What a goob.

  2. Debbie says:

    It looks amazing, despite the “set-backs!” I highly, highly recommend a Cuisinart, which you probably already know is awesome, but seriously…I tried making pesto a bunch of different ways with other spinners and blenders and such and nothing works as efficiently and amazingly as the Cuisinart! 😉 Baby George…the extra sugar on top!

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