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Decadent Saffron Rice Cake with Pavlova Crown – Award winning recipe

Saffron rice cake with pavlova crown on a green plate on a wooden bank
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This decadent recipe for a saffron rice cake with pavlova crown and roasted strawberries is perfect for every special occasion. Its a total showstopper and almost everyone can enjoy this beautiful delicious cake since its gluten free and sugar reduced too. The saffron threads give the cake a very unique taste. The Pavlova and coconut yoghurt filling is the perfect light and airy counter part.

Originally this recipe is from a food blogger friend of mine. Jan from “Taste Is Yours” recommended his cake recipe when I was looking for a new weekend baking project some time ago. Of course he said I would miss out on something if I wouldn’t try it. Thats typically man isn’t it 😉 ?!? Always so sure about themselves and their abilities.

This is a delicious and wonderful dessert for summer.

Decadent Saffron Rice Cake and why experimentalists are underrated

Since it’s not in my nature to follow rules or recipes I never made the original recipe. Its just not in my nature. My hubby always complains about setting the kitchen on fire one day or something like that but until now all is good and well and our home is still standing. I’m a very intuitive person when it comes to baking and cooking and experience taught me a lot. That is why I instantly knew when I read through Jan’s recipe that the only ingredients staying unchanged will be the eggs, the butter, baking powder and the saffron threads everything else had to go or would be replaced 😉 .

Being an unrecognised kitchen goddess and experimentalist by heart can be a very hard destiny. Almost always no praises when it comes to epic dishes 😉

Decadent Saffron Rice Cake: Special cakes need a special coronation.

Pavlova! The name alone could be of a charismatic Russian noble woman. Thats what I’m always thinking when I hear Pavlova. And a Pavlova on top it should be. Pavlova + saffron = a match made in heaven 😉

Originally Pavlova was a Russian Prima Ballerina and I think the meringue should be like a light and airy ballerina skirt. the recipe was created in honour of Pavlova after or during one of her visits in 1920 to Australia or New Zealand. The Pavlova is an important traditional dessert both in Australia and New Zealand.

Decadent saffron rice cake recipe: Pavlova crown with fruits and flowers
Its all in the details! The cake is a beauty from bottom to top

Decadent Saffron Rice Cake: Celebrating decadents with saffron and butter – Part one of Decadency

At the beginning of every recipe it’s important to prepare and measure all ingredients and bring everything to room temperature. Since I was at the beginning of developing a new recipe I started out with all the ingredients I wanted to use. This are the already measured and tested ingredients.

  • 100g Butter. Sorry I can’t exchange butter. Its the essence of a good decadent cake.
  • 100g Sugar because I can’t cream butter with dates 😉 and of course because we need Special.
  • 2 large Eggs, the best option would be local and organic
  • 50g ground almonds, that’s part of my flour substitution
  • 180g basmati rice, yes you heard right no rice flour which you have to buy in a special grocery store. No I used basmati rice from a small local business and ground it in my food processor as fine as possible
  • 1/4 teaspoon of safran threads
  • 1/2 teaspoons of salt
  • 260ml almond milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla pudding powder or corn starch
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
Saffron rice cake ingredients: saffron threads and eggs on a marbled surface
saffron and eggs, 2 ingredients of my decadent saffron rice cake

How to Prepare Part One

  • Preheat your oven to 180° Celsius and grease a 20cm round baking form with butter and flour the form with ground almond meal
  • At the beginning I warmed the almond milk in a small bowl and added the vanilla essence and the saffron threads for soaking.
  • In another medium size bowl mix all the dry ingredients together
  • I creamed the butter and the sugar about 7 minutes in my KitchenAid until pale and very fluffy
  • After that I added the room temperatured eggs one after another and cream for another couple of minutes
  • add the dry and wet ingredients alternately to the butter eggs mixture. The batter will be very runny but that’s totally fine. the rice needs more liquid during the baking.
  • Let the batter stand for about 10 minutes.
  • After the 10 minutes stir the batter thoroughly through with a spoon.
  • Pour the batter in the prepared baking form
  • Bake at 180° Celsius for about 70 minutes or until a wooden tooth pick comes out clean
  • Let the cake cool to room temperature and spread some strawberry marmalade on top
saffron rice cake without pavlova crown on green plate
The cake is delicious without the pavlova crown too. Just top it with some cream and fruits

Lets crown it with a Pavlova – part 2 of Decadency

I’m sharing the method which works best for me. I know there are a lot of recipes out there but this works for me best.

Making a Pavlova can be very tricky and sometime when the air is too moist it will not get a crispy outer texture but will maybe stay a normal sticky meringue . But that’s ok it will taste delicious too.

  • 2 large egg whites
  • 90g white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 teaspoon whit vinegar (but I made this recipe with apple vinegar too)
  • 200g strawberries, hulled and cut in 0,5cm thick slices
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoons vanilla sugar
  • 60g or more sugar to taste
  • 300g plain coconut sugar or cream
  • strawberries and peaches for decoration
Decadent saffron rice cake recipe: unbaked pavlova on a baking sheet
The unbaked pavlova is so beautiful and shiny.

How to Prepare Part 2

The Pavlova

  • Take a baking parchment and put the 20cm baking form on top and retrace it with a pencil
  • Turn the paper and put it on the baking sheet. The circle should be visible.
  • Preheat the oven to 150°Celsius
  • Beat the egg whites in a bowl of an electric mixer until soft peaks form.
  • Gradually add the sugar and beat very well until the mixture is glossy.
  • Sift the cornflour over the egg white mixture and add the vinegar.
  • Fold everything carefully
  • Put the meringue int the middle of the drawn circle
  • Spread everything evenly in a circle but leave about 2 cm free on all sides
  • Form a hollow in the middle
  • Place the baking sheet into the oven and reduce to 120°Celsius and cook for about 1 hour
  • After one hour turn the oven off and let the Pavlova cool in the oven.
  • Very important under any circumstances don’t open the oven during baking and cooling

Balsamic roasted strawberries

  • put the sliced strawberries, balsamic vinegar and sugar into a pan and cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes. Strawberries should not be to soft cooked
  • Let everything cool
strawberries, sugar and balsamic vinegar in a pan
Balsamic roasted strawberries are so delicious and easy to prepare.

Crowning the Cake

  • Top the saffron rice cake with warm strawberry jam
  • Put the Pavlova on top
  • Spread the coconut yoghurt or beaten cream in the hollow
  • put about 2 tablespoons of roasted strawberries on the cream
  • Decorate everything with fresh strawberries , flowers and peaches slices and drizzle some more roasted strawberries on top
decadent saffron rice cake with pavlova crown on a green plate
This cake is the ultimate showstopper for every special ocassoin

This Decadent Saffron rice cake with a Pavlova crown is my contribution to the Austrian Food Blog Awards 2019 in the Category “Lebe, Liebe, Backen”. I hope you enjoyed my recipe I know it needs a little longer than your average cake recipe but believe me it’s worth all the work and time.

AFBA LOGO

A lot of hugs and sugary kisses Nina

You may also be interested in our delicious whole grain carrot cake scones with honey and lemon glaze.

*Note: My recipe won an Austrian Food Blog Award 2019 in the category “Liebe, Lebe, Backen” – which is the baking category. It was the most popular category and had the most entries.

Print Recipe

decadent saffron rice cake with pavlova crown on a green plate

Decadent Saffron Rice Cake with Pavlova Crown

This is my award wining recipe for a delicious gluten free Saffron cake made with ground rice and topped with a crispy and fluffy Pavlova Crwon and balsamic roasted strawberries
Print Pin Rate
Course: cake, Dessert
Cuisine: gluten free
Keyword: cake, gluten free, pavlova, rice pudding, saffron
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
Pavlova resting time and assembling the cake: 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 373kcal
Author: Nina

Ingredients

Saffron Rice Cake

  • 100 g butter romm temperature
  • 100 g sugar
  • 2 eggs large and room temperature
  • 50 g ground almonds
  • 180 g basmati rice grounded in your blender until as fine as flour
  • 1/4 tsp saffron threads
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 260 ml almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp strawberry jam

Tthe Pavlova Crown

  • 2 egg whites from large eggs
  • 90 g water
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar

Roasted Balsamic Strawberries

  • 200 g strawberries hulled and cut into 1cm thick slices
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla sugar
  • 60 g white sugar or more to taste
  • 300 g coconut yoghurt plain or vanilla flavoured
  • 1/2 cup strawberries

Instructions

The Safron rice cake

  • Preheat the oven to 180°Celsius and grease a 20cm in diamiter round baking form with butter and flour the form with ground almonds.
    At the beginning I warmed the almond milk in a small bowl and added the vanilla essence and the saffron threads for soaking.
    In another medium size bowl mix all the dry ingredients together.
    Cream the butter and the sugar for about 7 minutes in your stand mixer until pale and very fluffy.
    Then add the room temperatured eggs one after another and cream for another couple of minutes.
    Add the dry and wet ingredients alternately to the butter mixture. The batter will be very runny but thats totally fine. The rice needs more liquid during the baking.
    Let the batter stand for about 10 minutes.
    After 10 minutes stir the batter thoroughy with a spoon.
    Pour the batter in the prepared baking form.
    Bake at 180°C for about 70 minutes or until a wooden tooth pick comes out clean.
    Let the cake cool to room temperature and spread some strawberry marmelade on top.
    saffron rice cake without pavlova crown on green plate

The Pavlova Crown

  • Take a baking parchment and put the 20cm baking form on top to retrace it with a pencil.
    Turn the paper and put it on the baking sheet. The circle should be visible.
    Preheat the oven to 150°Celsius.
    Beat the egg whites the bowl of your stand mixer until soft peaks form.
    Gradually add the sugar and beat very well until the mixture is glossy.
    Sift the corn flour over the egg whites mixture and add the vinegar.
    Fold everything carefully.
    Put the meringue in the middle of the drawn circle.
    Spread everything evenly in a circle but leave about 2cm free on all sides.
    Form a hollow in the middle.
    Place the baking sheet into the oven and reduce to 120°Celsius and bake for about 1 hour.
    After one hour turn the oven off and let the Pavlova cool in the oven.
    Very important under any circumstances do mot open the oven during baking and cooling.
    Decadent saffron rice cake recipe: unbaked pavlova on a baking sheet

Balsamic Roasted Strawberries

  • Put the sliced strawberries, balsamic vinegar and sugar into a pan and cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes.
    Strawberries should not be to soft.
    Let everything cool.
    decadent saffron rice cake with pavlova crown: strawberries, sugar and balsamic vinegar in a pan

Crowning the cake

  • Top the saffron cake which you smeared wit hwarm strawberry jam, with the Pavlova
    spread the coconut yoghurt or beaten cream into the hollow.
    Decorate everything with fresh strawberries and eatable blowers and drizzle with some more roasted strawberries liqiud on top.

Nutrition

Calories: 373kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 70mg | Sodium: 326mg | Potassium: 236mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 394IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 171mg | Iron: 1mg

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