Red Walnut & Rose Cake

Red Walnut & Rose Cake | Arcadian Botanica

If you love nature and what it offers to our tables, then you are probably like me – full of wonderment and excitement – when a new natural food is brought to our attention. When I stumbled upon red walnuts in the market, I knew I had to utilize their beauty in a bake. I also had been wanting to experiment with the botanical syrups I had in my cupboard, so I thought that the light floral of rose would complement the earthy nuttiness of walnuts in a sweet confection. It’s all quite romantic. Certainly roses are. As for the walnuts, the red color evokes that romanticism, but being known as “blood walnuts” in their native lands of Central Europe also adds a certain romantic dark charm.

Red Walnuts | Arcadian Botanica
Rose Syrup | Arcadian BotanicaThe cake recipe is one I often use. I use it for different applications, but I always make sure to have nuts and white chocolate in the batter as those give the cake its distinct flavor. And the buttermilk makes everything better. I’ve found buttermilk to make more moist and richer cakes than sour cream or other liquids. Eggs from the backyard also help to elevate a cakes flavor, I think.

Red Walnut & Rose Cake | Arcadian Botanica

The frosting is where the rose flavor can shine. Adding it as a concentrated syrup makes it easy to add the rose flavor without adding a lot of liquid. You can find the Amoretti rose syrup I use here. Amoretti uses real botanicals, so their syrups taste authentic and not like fake “extracts”. This year I hope to have enough roses in my garden to experiment with making my own! It would be interesting to see if different rose fragrances impart different subtle flavors. We’ll see! But for now, I’ve been very, very pleased with Amoretti syrups.

This cake is perfect for Valentine’s day, weddings, or garden parties. It’s easy to make, but the outcome is oh so stunning. Just take a look at these gorgeous photos – – –

Red Walnut & Rose Cake | Arcadian Botanica

Red Walnut & Rose Cake | Arcadian BotanicaRed Walnut & Rose Cake | Arcadian Botanica

 

Red Walnut & Rose Cake

Ingredients

    For the Red Walnut Cake
  • 3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 2-1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 4 oz. white chocolate
  • 1-1/2 cups full fat buttermilk
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • For the Rose Buttercream
  • 2 cups (4 sticks) butter, softened
  • 6 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 50 ml rose syrup

Instructions

    For the Red Walnut Cake
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Grease and lightly flour three 9-inch cake tins.
  3. Chop walnuts and toast in the oven for 5 minutes.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, sift together 3 cups of flour, the sugar, baking soda, and salt.
  5. In a medium pot, bring the butter and water to a boil over medium heat. Stir occasionally until the butter melts.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in the white chocolate until it melts.
  7. Add the buttermilk, lightly beaten eggs, and vanilla to the white chocolate mixture until blended.
  8. Gradually mix the wet white chocolate mixture into the dry mixture.
  9. Toss walnuts in the remaining 1/2 cup of flour and fold into cake batter.
  10. Pour into cake tins. Bake for 30-35 minutes until the tops are golden.
  11. Allow to cool completely before removing from tins. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in freezer for several hours until firm - this makes the cakes easier to level, trim, and frost.
  12. Remove from freezer when ready to frost to level and trim the edges.
  13. For the Rose Buttercream
  14. Beat the butter and confectioner's sugar together until smooth and creamy.
  15. Mix in the milk and vanilla extract.
  16. Lastly, mix in the rose syrup.
  17. Assembly
  18. Frost the middle of a round cake board and stick the first cake layer upon it to keep the cake from sliding.
  19. Frost and layer until you have all three cake layer tops and sides covered and nicely edged.
  20. Add beautiful, organic flowers to complete the look.
http://www.arcadianash.com/cookery/red-walnut-rose-cake/

 

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