Dear Team Nigella, would the brillant Apple and Almond Cake work with Sicilian pistachio flour instead of almond flour? I was also thinking of adding a tablesoon of kirsch to this variation as a taste enhancer. Besides, is the lemon juice in the recipe there to set the eggs or just in order to balance the acidity in general? Thanks in advance.
Nigella's Apple And Almond Cake (from FEAST) is a gluten-free cake made with ground almonds (almond meal/flour). The combination of the oil in the nuts and the moisture from the apple purée means that the cake tastes rich and luxurious without the need to add any butter.
In theory you should be able to replace the ground almonds with other ground nuts, such as hazelnuts. Ground pistachios (or pistachio flour) is also a possibility and should give the cake a wonderful colour. However, they are much more expensive than almonds so it may be more economical to perhaps use a mixture of pistachios and almonds (unless there is an allergy to almonds). The lemon juice in the recipe is intended to balance out the sweetness, so you could use kirsch as an alternative, or in addition to some of the lemon juice. We would however mention that as we have not tried the cake with these ingredients, we are unable to guarantee the results.