Marylu Downing

Persian Love Cake: one bite of this spicy, sweet cake, and the person served a piece of the cake will fall in love. 

Do as the character Najid did when he was courting Elizabeth, make a Persian Love Cake for the one whose heart you wish to capture.  (Or just make it for the ones you already love).

Once upon a time in Persia, an ordinary young woman fell in love with a prince.

To win his heart, she cooked a cake filled with the essence of roses and topped with a buttercream icing decorated with edible rose petals, pomegranate seeds, and pistachio nuts.

I first had a bite of this cake at a writer’s group meeting.  I didn’t fall in love  with the writer who made it, but I did fall in love with the cake, the spicy, sweet taste, the rosy fragrance, and the idea of it.  I thought I would throw it into my novel, because the man who makes it, Najid, is Persian, and he hopes it will work its charms on his new girlfriend, Elizabeth. Poetry-quoting Najid has a romantic side.

The cake is basically easy, once you have all the ingredients, which includes fine almond flour   (Bob’s Red Mill is a good one) and rose water. And you will need unsprayed rose petals, pistachios and pomegranate seeds, or candied ginger, for tossing onto the icing. It is a pretty and a tasty cake.

One word of caution, be sure to let the cake cool completely before icing it.


1 1/2C all purpose flour

1/2 C almond flour

3 T canola or other veg oil

2 lg. eggs

1 C gran. sugar

1 tsp lemon zest

2 tsp lemon juice

2 T rose water

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2 tsp. ground cardamom

1 tsp. baking powder

3/4 tsp salt.

for icing:  A beautiful white glaze made of 1 1/2Cpowdered sugar, 1T rosewater,

1 1/2 tsp milk, 3T rose petals, 1/4 cup pistachios.  A tablespoon full of pomegranate seeds

2 T ginger candies. (The candied ginger and the pomegranate seeds are optional but add a little zest and color).

for the Cake:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8″ cake pan with parchment paper and set aside.

  1. In a standing mixer with paddle attachment, cream butter, oil, eggs, and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add in lemon zest, lemon juice, rose water, and vanilla extract.
  2. Turn speed to low and add in flour, almond flour, cardamom, baking powder, and salt until just mixed.
  3. Pour batter into prepared cake pan. Bake for 40 minutes, or until cake is lightly brown on top and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool slightly before making the glaze.
  4. To make the glaze, combine powdered sugar, rose water, and whole milk in a microwave-safe bowl and whisk to combine (glaze will be very thick). Microwave for 10-15 seconds to thin out mixture, then pour over cooled cake.
  5. Sprinkle crushed pistachios and rose petals (and candied ginger, if using). Serve.

See what happens.  LOVE!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top