Honey & Pistachio Balkava Cake

Baker Man is live and here’s a Baklava cake. That’s right, you read it correctly. That means honey, nuts, filo pastry – all in cake form. I got the idea here, and decided to tweak some elements as well as supercharge it, by turning it from impressive cupcake to full-on layer cake!


Then real star for me is the nut buttercream, it works in perfect harmony with the cake and the filo pastry. Together, the cake creates a fantastic nod to the middle-eastern delicacy.

Yields: 15 slices.


280g plain flour
170g butter, unsalted and softened
300g sugar
250ml buttermilk
3 large eggs (room temperature)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp orange extract
1 tsp mixed spice
1/2 tsp rose extract
3 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt

Nutty Buttercream
200g softened, unsalted butter.
400g icing sugar
1 tbsp each of pistachios, hazelnuts and almonds, ground

Honey Buttercream
150g softened, unsalted butter.
300g icing sugar
1 1/2 tbsp runny honey

4 sheets filo pastry

To make the cake, start by greasing 2 deep 6″ cake tins with butter and dust with flour – making sure the bottom and sides are covered with a thin film of flour. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C (170°C fan).

Sieve the flour, salt and baking powder into a bowl and set aside.

Beat the butter in a stand mixer for 5 minutes. Add the sugar and beat again for another 3 minutes until fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time and mix inbetween each addition. Add the flavourings and beat just for another 20 seconds.


Tip in a third of the flour and beat to combine, followed by half the buttermilk. Repeat this process, ending with combined the final third of flour until it’s fully combined.

Tip the batter equally into the cake tins and bake for 40 minutes.

To make the pistachio buttercream, beat the softened butter for 5 minutes until it’s light and cream. Add half the icing sugar and beat again. Add the second half and beat once more along with a splash of milk if needed. Add the nuts and beat for 20 seconds until combined.

To make the honey buttercream, repeat the process and simply add the honey in place of the nuts. Simples.


With a sharp knife, trace round a 6″ disc, or one of the cake tins once they are cool, into the four sheets of the filo pastry to you’re left with a circle of filo. Cut this in half. brush each layer with some melted butter and layer back together, placing on a baking tray into the oven for 15 minutes. Remove and leave to cool.

Once the cakes are cool and levelled if needed, assemble. On top of the first layer, spread a generous amount of the pistachio buttercream, levelling with a spatula. Turn the second cake layer inside down and place on to, so the smooth flat bottom becomes the top of the cake. Press down lightly to secure in place and smother with the honey buttercream. First the sides and then the top. Scrape off the excess with a cake scraper or spatula and place in the first for an hour. Once set, spread on the second lot of buttercream, smoothing the sides and top down.

Once you’ve reached your desired look, top with the semi-circle of pastry and pipe on the stars of the remaining pistachio buttercream.