Mandarin, Pistachio and Chickpea Cake


Prep: 20 mins | Cooking time: 1 hr 50 mins | Serves: 12


5 mandarins (seedless are best)
150g (5½ oz) Pistachio kernels, plus 2 tablespoons extra, coarsely chopped, to garnish
400g tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed (see tips)
1 cup EQUAL SPOONFUL, plus 1/4 cup extra to dust
1 Tsp. pure vanilla extract
5 eggs
75g (½ cup) plain flour (see tip)
1 Tsp. baking powder
1 Tsp. bicarbonate soda
Thick greek yoghurt, to serve (optional)


1. Place three of the mandarins in a large saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil, then drain. Cover with cold water again, return to the boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes, adding a little more water to pan as necessary. Drain mandarins and set aside to cool.

2. Preheat the oven to 170°C (conventional). Lightly grease a 22cm round cake tin and line it with baking paper

3. Cut the mandarins into quarters and remove seeds if necessary (discard). Process pistachios in a food processor to fine crumbs. Remove and set aside. Add chickpeas to food processor and process to fine crumbs. Remove and set aside. Add mandarins and process until smooth, add EQUALand vanilla and stir to combine.

4. Use an electric mixer to whisk the eggs in a large bowl until thick. Add the mandarin mixture and fold in until well combined, then add the ground pistachios, chickpeas, flour, baking powder and bicarb, stir until well combined. Spoon the batter into the prepared tin and smooth the surface with the back of a spoon.

5. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out with a few moist crumbs. Set aside to cool for 20 minutes, then carefully remove from tin and cool completely on a wire rack.

6. Peel and segment remaining 2 mandarins. Combine 2 tablespoons of the extra EQUAL and 1 tablespoons water in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil over medium heat. Add mandarin segments and simmer for 1-2 minutes or until syrupy.

7. Brush top of cooled cake with a little syrup from bottom of saucepan. Combine extra chopped pistachio nuts and remaining 1 tablespoon EQUAL. Sprinkle pistachio mixture over cake, then pile mandarin segments in middle of cake. Serve with a dollop of thick greek yoghurt if desired.

8. This recipe is courtesy of Chrissy Freer and published here with her full permission. To see more from Chrissy, visit: 

Chef's Tips: 

  • For a gluten-free version, replace the flour with gluten-free plain (all-purpose) flour.

  • You can replace the tinned chickpeas with 255 gm (1½ cups) cooked chickpeas.

  • This cake will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Note: Chickpeas in a cake may sound strange, but this cake is absolutely delicious. The chickpeas add a nutty taste, texture and body, and the cake does not contain any oil or butter.