Mother’s Day Rhubarb and Pistachio Cake

(Serves 8-10) 

Spring is here at last and as Mother’s Day fast approaches, I am busy thinking of all the ways in which I can spoil my own Mum and make her feel extra special this Sunday.

I have been shopping at my local Sainsburys since it opened its doors 33 years ago. Granted, as a 7 year old, sweeties were pretty much the main item on my shopping agenda, but these days, I have expanded my repertoire and rely on Sainsburys for my shopping. So when Sainsburys asked me to create some special recipes for them, I was thrilled and I am so delighted to share my first recipe with you in time for Mother's Day and what better way to celebrate your Mum then with a delicious, seasonal and incredibly easy and impressive sweet treat.

This gorgeous rhubarb and pistachio cake is the perfect treat to celebrate Mothering Sunday with the whole family. It is not too sweet and that beautifully vibrant, pink rhubarb adds such a lovely tangy flavour to the cake as do the pistachios. Being Persian, I always turn to pistachios when I want to make something particularly special. For us, pistachios are the King of nuts and they add such wonderful texture and flavour to both sweet and savoury dishes.

The best thing about this cake is that is falls in line with my ethos… Simple and easy to prepare yet always impressive and full of flavour. You can add your own twists to this recipe by making a little cream cheese frosting with a few pistachios and washed pink rose petals or serve with custard, whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for extra indulgence.

However you choose to serve it, you’ll win Mum over this year… and let’s face it, everyone loves cake and Mum most definitely deserves it! **Though she won’t resist sharing her cake with the family and that’s why she’s so special to us.**


3 large eggs

250g caster sugar

Zest of 2 oranges

1 heaped teaspoon of vanilla bean paste

250g self-raising flour

150g unsalted butter, melted

400g rhubarb, ends trimmed and then cut diagonally into 1cm thick slices

150g pistachios, very finely chopped in a processor


Preheat the oven to 170 degrees (or 160, fan assisted) and line a square baking tin with oven/baking paper.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, vanilla paste and orange zest together until evenly combined. Add the flour and incorporate, followed by the melted butter and mix well until the batter is smooth. Add the rhubarb slices and the pistachios and mix until all evenly combined.

Pour the cake mix into the cake tin and smooth over the top to make sure batter is evenly distributed and surface is nice and flat. Then place in the oven and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until lovely and golden brown on top. Insert a skewer/knife into centre and ensure it comes out clean. Allow cake to cool and serve with clotted cream or vanilla ice cream.