© 2012 Green Kitchen Stories Saffron_yogurt_cake

Three years and a cake

It was just about three years ago that we started Green Kitchen Stories. I remember the process we went through to register the domain name. GreenKitchen was already taken. So was OurGreenKitchen. We talked about how we wanted a short personal story to go with each recipe. “Hey, let’s try Green Kitchen Stories.” And there it was.

This was intended to be some sort of playground for us. We wanted to improve our cooking and photographing skills. To learn more about health and nutrition. And to have fun. I know it sounds like a cliché, but we didn’t for a second believe that anyone would find their way here. We uploaded a few photos on recipe sites like foodgawker and tastespotting, mostly for fun. And two days later we received an email that we had a comment awaiting approval. Our first comment!

So much has happened in three years. We had a daughter. Together we travelled the world. When we got back we made an app. And all of a sudden we were signed to do a book. The impact that this blog and all of you readers have had on our lives has been massive. Thank you for standing by our side. Thank you for your comments, likes and tweets. And thank you for cooking with us.

Three years have passed, three more will come. We are looking into the future with hope, excitement and – quite honestly – a certain amount of fear. Where will this road lead us? We have already gone so much further than we could ever imagine. Hopefully you will always be there to hold our hands.

Now let’s have cake!

If you look in the ingredient list you will notice how this cake is filled with middle eastern flavors like saffron, honey, figs, dates and roasted nuts. But where the middle eastern desserts often goes über sweet, this cake is more on the fresher side. Most of the sweetness is kept to the roasted hazelnut and date crust. The saffron is used in a frozen yogurt filling that is bursting with flavor but still tastes very light. And the whole shebang is topped with ripe figs that are drizzled with honey. We recommend eating the entire cake at once (but maybe not by yourself). If you try too refreeze it once it has thawed, it won’t look half as pretty the second time. We got some proof of that in our freezer.

Hazelnut cake with Frozen Saffron Yogurt and Honey Drizzled Figs

Crust
2 1/2 cups (350 g) raw hazelnuts (save a handful for the topping)
1/2 tsp sea salt
15 fresh medjool-like dates, pitted
2 tbsp virgin coconut oil
1 tbsp water

Filling
3 cups (720 ml) fat whole-milk turkish/greek yogurt, unsweetened
1 cup (240 ml) coconut milk
4 tbsp runny honey + some extra for topping
1 gram (0.035 oz) powdered saffron (2 envelopes)
8 small fresh figs, halved

Preparing the crust: Toast the hazelnuts on a baking tray on 180°C (350°F) in the oven, for 10 – 15 minutes or until skin cracks. Let cool for a few minutes, then remove skin by rubbing the nuts between a rough kitchen towel. Add hazelnuts (save a handful for the topping) and salt to a food processor or blender and pulse for about 10 seconds. The nuts should be chopped but not powdered. Pour the nuts into a separate bowl and set aside. Add the pitted dates, coconut oil and water to the food processor and run it on high speed until the mixture comes together to a sticky paste. Add the chopped hazelnuts and run until everything is combined into a sticky pebbled mixture. Place in a 20 cm (8-inch) spring-form cake tin and flatten it out with your fingers. Put in the fridge to chill while you prepare the filling.

Making the filling: Place turkish yoghurt, coconut milk and honey in a medium size mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Stir in the powdered saffron very gently with a spoon. Remove the spring-form cake tin from the fridge and pour the saffron filling on top of the crust. Then place the spring-form in the freezer for about 1 1/2 hour (you can keep it in the freezer for days but then you have to let it thaw for about 15-20 minutes before serving it). Top the cake with fresh figs and drizzle with honey. Serve immediately.

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80 Comments

  1. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 00:28 | #

    Congrats guys! This looks absolutely amazing! I’ve made a cashew filling before but haven’t tried a yogurt filling. I’m making this sooner than immediately ;) That yellow color is so beautiful.

  2. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 00:37 | #

    Congratulations David and Luise! And of course little Elsa for always being such a gorgeous model for photo shoots :-) I have loved every word of your blog and I truly hope the best for all three of you going into the future. You have all inspired me more than you can ever hope to imagine and I’m sure there are many more like me out there. Oh yes – and the cake looks absolutely stunning!!

  3. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 01:06 | #

    Congratulations! I am so glad you guys started your blog and gave us a look into your world! It has been so great to travel this journey with you. This cake it’s beautiful and sounds light and delicious.

  4. Brittany
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 01:51 | #

    Wow, every time I think I have tried every recipe you have created, you come up with another amazing one! Saffron, yogurt, cake…!?!? Thank you for being so amazing, you are truly a gift to the cooking world! :o)

  5. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 01:51 | #

    Congrats friends. Do keep blogging for at least another 3 years! Your blog is always a favorite read.

  6. Jennifer L
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 02:00 | #

    Hooray for three years! We definitely look forward to many more years of great recipes :-) This cake is beautiful. I don’t usually eat yogurt, but I could make an exception. Or maybe just post your picture of the cake on my fridge. It’s just lovely to look at.

  7. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 02:04 | #

    Congratulations! I love to follow Green Kitchen Stories & your app is very handy (both in the kitchen & at the grocery store :)
    I wish you the very best at the present and in the future – Let your passion for life & living, with its ups and downs, shine in everything you do :-)

  8. Nyomi
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 02:10 | #

    Hi David & Luise, I stumbled upon your blog via My New Roots a couple years ago and have been an avid reader ever since. This cake looks absolutely gorgeous and I would love to try the recipe but have a dairy intolerance, can you suggest a dairy free option I could sub for the turkish yoghurt?

  9. Alexandra
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 02:24 | #

    Hi guys, I love, love, love your recipes but sometimes I get confused by your quantities. For example in this recipe you have 1 cup listed as 240ml and 3 cups listed as 620ml (which makes one cup 206ml). I live in Australia where 1 cup is 250ml. Is there a standard cup size in Sweden? I’m just wondering how to convert your measurements when I read your recipes. Thank you and thank you for the continued inspiration.

    • Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 08:27 | #

      Hi Alexandra, sorry we hit a typo there. It should say 720 ml, which is equal to 240 ml/cup. That is a US cup. If you live in Australia just use slightly less, or you could use a ml container to measure it exactly.
      Good luck!
      /David

  10. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 02:49 | #

    Congratulations! I’m a huge fan of the blog, the photography, the recipes and now the book. Wonderful!

  11. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 02:52 | #

    This cake is stunning! I wouldn’t even know what to do with a beauty like that!

  12. Kathi
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 02:56 | #

    I can’t wait for your cookbook to come out! Do you know when it will be published? Beautiful blog by the way!

    • Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 06:53 | #

      Hi Kathi, we are glad that you are looking forward to the book, so are we. The expected release date is April 23rd.
      We will let you know when it is available for pre-order.
      /David

  13. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 03:17 | #

    Congratulations on your 3rd! Wishing you countless more delicious adventures and thanks for a stunning dessert cake!

  14. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 03:33 | #

    Congratulations! Your blog is fantastic with beautiful pictures and recipes!

  15. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 03:45 | #

    Congrats on your 3 years guys! Awesome work and stunning looking cake. Lotsa love xx

  16. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 04:03 | #

    Congratulations on the anniversary of your beautiful site. It’s always a pleasure to visit – you deserve all the success you’ve achieved.

  17. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 07:02 | #

    Happy 3 years Anniversary to you and to many more ahead! I always enjoy reading your latest news, try your healthy & delicious recipes, and admire your excellent photography. You made it look so simple to create new recipes, post them in your beautiful blog and write your book when I know how much work, time & dedication you must put into everything. You are both amazing and pretty little Elsa is precious! Thank you for sharing your passion with us all. Best of luck with the book! By the way, that cake looks YUMMIE! :-)

  18. Dee Dee
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 07:23 | #

    Fabulous, fabulous, fabulous! Thank you for all sharing all your deliciousness with all of us.

  19. Frauke
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 07:35 | #

    Congratulations on the anniversary. When I see recipes like this I heavily regret to have no freezer at all. But there is no room in my flat for one so it’s just drooling over the pictures again. Maybe I could make this when I am visiting my parents next week…

  20. Caroline
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 08:06 | #

    Congratulations to your blog! It’s my favourite one and I tell all my friends about you. Every time they come over, there is at least one thing, that I’ve cooked from your blog, so I have to tell them: “No, unfortunately I didn’t invent this, GKS did!” And then they see your beautiful blog and start browsing through the recipes.

  21. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 08:37 | #

    Congratulations! I just found your beautiful blog the other day and I’m looking forward to follow you into the future!

  22. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 08:52 | #

    Congratulations to your 3rd anniversary – the world of food blogs wouldn’t be the same without yours. And – again- a totally yummy looking cake!

  23. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 08:52 | #

    Happy Blogday! Congrats on all you have accomplished with your outstanding blog so far and I’m looking forward to following you guys for several years to come. Your cake looks amazing and I’m thinking it will be perfect to make when it’s time for my family and I to celebrate the arrival of our second baby which is due any day now. :)

  24. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 08:53 | #

    Hi There,
    Thanks for all of your emails. Recipes are just amazing and so beautifully presented. love the name “Green Kitchen Stories”…the photography, such a pleasure to browse your work and wow…A Book? I can really sense the passion and love that simply makes so many of your dishes stand out and grab me! I appreciate everything and thank you. Congratulations on your third wonderful year…yum

    Melanie
    x

  25. Nina
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 08:57 | #

    Beautiful cake!! Is it greek yoghurt 10%, or would 2% be okay? Thank you for the recipe!

    • Posted 29 Sep ’12 at 21:34 | #

      Hi Nina, we used 10% and I think that will work best. If you however try with 2% do let us know how it turned out.
      /David

  26. Sini
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 09:06 | #

    Happy Blogday you three! This is one of the most amazing looking cakes I’ve ever seen. The brilliant yellow color – wow! Can’t wait to have it on my plate.

  27. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 09:10 | #

    Yep. Will be here to hold your hands.

    THANK you for all the love, magic, stunning photos and insane recipes that you have shared over the years. I have read every single one of the posts (over and over again) and I am so happy that you started this adventure! May it be blessed forever <3

    /ELenore

  28. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 09:36 | #

    Congrats on your third birthday and to everything you have achieved!! The cake looks truly amazing!! I’m sure it would be lovely now for an autumn feast, or it would be the center of everyone’s attention for christmas!

  29. Lena
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 10:09 | #

    Wow, this cake looks amazing and really mouthwatering!
    And of course, congratulation to your “birthday”! Thanks for sharing all those gorgeous recipes, and I’m hoping for many more!
    Keep it up!

  30. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 10:28 | #

    Congratulations on a three years full of incredible achievements and here’s to many more!

  31. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 11:16 | #

    Happy birthday! It’s encouraging to read how far one can come with a true passion. And your cake: just stunning to look at and to imagine the flavours. I’m going to empty my tiny freezer in order to make it the next weekend. Thanks very much for all your inspiration.

  32. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 11:33 | #

    Joyeux Anniversaire! That’s “happy birthday” in French. So proud of you guys. I have been a loyal reader from the beginning and so happy to see how GKS and you have evolved over the years. Now onto bigger and better things. Congrats on your success and thanks for feeding me well over here in Paris. Bisous!! (and can I have a piece of that cake please? :) xx

  33. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 11:44 | #

    Fabulous – a delicious cake and a very sweet milestone. :) Congrats!

  34. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 12:02 | #

    Wow this looks so good! Yumyumyumyum…. I really need to make this baby VERY soon..

    http://agoodiebag.blogspot.dk/

  35. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 12:08 | #

    Big, big congratulations on three incredible years. You give so much to us that is truly appreciated. I am so looking forward to the release of your cookbook! Big hugs’n'kisses from a faithful reader from Denmark.

  36. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 13:13 | #

    I was so hoping you’d share this recipe when I saw it on Twitter! Congratulations on three years of blogging and the road you’ve travelled so far! I hope you’ll keep this blog going much longer, it is so beautiful and your recipes are amazing!

  37. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 16:14 | #

    Congratulations on three years! I look forward to many, many more healthful recipes and stories.

  38. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 16:40 | #

    Wow, you just gave me goosebumps, your beautiful words combined with Agnes Obel playing on the stereo was just a magic combination!
    Thank you for all your post, photographs, stories and magic that you have brought me the last three years, I am so looking forward to much more…and a book.
    You make me smile on a rainy day <3

    All the best from Josephine Malene

  39. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 18:50 | #

    Fantastically gorgeous cake to celebrate a fantastically gorgeous – and hugely inspirational – food blog. I always enjoy the words & images as much as the recipes.

  40. claudia
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 19:49 | #

    I absolutely love your web site, the stories, and photography. It is always such a nice feeling to find other people with the same believe in health, food, and life in general. Congratulations on all your successes!

    Claudia

  41. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 21:23 | #

    Congrats on 3 years and what a gorgeous cake to celebrate with! I would have never thought to use saffron in a sweet dish but it sounds amazing!

  42. TFB
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 21:28 | #

    Congrats on the 3 years! This cake is too good looking! I am on a diet and YOU are not helping! xx
    themusingsofateenagemind.blogspot.co.uk/

  43. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 21:39 | #

    I absolutely adore your blog! It’s the first ‘Food’ blog I read. Actually, the only one I read. Not only can you see your passion for cooking, but I love that you incorporate culture into your recipes! Traveling is my passion and I can see its your guys’ as well :) Much love from California! I just got back from Sweden this summer, it’s beautiful. :) And so is this blog!!

  44. Kai
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 22:23 | #

    Incredible timing! My birthday is tomorrow, I think I’ll be celebrating with this cake!

  45. Mathilde
    Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 22:33 | #

    Happy birthday to this blog ! Congratulations ! And thank you for sharing.
    Hummm… looks good this cake. Let’s celebrate it and cook ! (Imagine the number of birthday cakes made for it ! )

  46. Posted 26 Sep ’12 at 22:44 | #

    What a beauty of a cake.

    And congratulations! I’m looking forward to the next three years. Tomorrow morning I will certainly toast my green breakfast smoothie to Green Kitchen Stories. And that beautiful cookbook that I cannot wait to hold in my hands.

  47. Philippine
    Posted 27 Sep ’12 at 11:09 | #

    Happy Birthday! Nice story about the birth of the name! I find the personal stories so full of love and warmth. They are indeed a valuable aspect of your concept. You guys have a lot of talents: cooking, photography, design, inspiring, writing, etc, etc.
    Thanx for sharing them with us. With love from Holland!XXL

  48. Posted 27 Sep ’12 at 12:02 | #

    Congratulations! I hope you continue for many years to come. This cake looks absolutely lovely, especially with the figs.

  49. Maria
    Posted 27 Sep ’12 at 17:31 | #

    Congrats! I’ve been a fan of your blog for about a year and I look forward to many many many more green kitchen stories.

  50. Liz B
    Posted 27 Sep ’12 at 18:01 | #

    Love and thank you for to you three for your inspiration and your wonderful recipes!

    Here’s to a great slice of cake, and more years to come!!

    I’ll be here to follow and share with you :)

    Liz B x

  51. Posted 28 Sep ’12 at 05:04 | #

    Three years! YAY! I first found you guys in the Fall/Winter 2010… and I fell in love immediately. Can’t wait to see what y’all have in store for us!

  52. Posted 28 Sep ’12 at 08:15 | #

    A knockout- beautiful with the yellow cake topped by the purple figs, very light for what’s basically a cheesecake, and the crust is about the healthiest crust recipe ever. I’ve never seen powdered saffron for sale where I am, so I would just heat up the coconut milk a little and then put saffron fronds in it and let it soak for a while. There would be a few bits of saffron in the cake but I think that would be fine.

  53. Posted 28 Sep ’12 at 08:40 | #

    That looks stunning! I can imagine how refreshing and tasty it is. Congratulations – you’ve achieved so much in a short 3 years.

  54. Tel
    Posted 29 Sep ’12 at 06:25 | #

    Thank you for the lovely photos and what sounds like a fresh and delicious cake.

    Do you have any suggestions for how to substitute for the pistachios? I am allergic to tree nuts, so the only “nut” I can eat is a peanut. Would that work? Or is there another ingredient that can be added to the dates to yield a similar crust?

    Thanks so much.

    • Posted 29 Sep ’12 at 21:18 | #

      Hi Tel, you can substitute the nuts with shelled sunflower seeds that are lightly toasted.
      Good luck!
      /David

  55. kaktusfink
    Posted 1 Oct ’12 at 12:27 | #

    I made the cake yesterday, and as I can’t freeze a whole cake in my tiny freezer-thing I left out the coconut milk and put the cake in the fridge for about 4 hours. It worked brilliantly! As I didn’t have powdered saffron I used strands and soaked them in a little sherry.
    Thanks for the incredible recipe! 4 of us managed to eat 3/4 of the cake …

  56. Posted 2 Oct ’12 at 02:32 | #

    so much can happen in a short time, and you are certainly a case in point! a much deserved congrats, and no surprise that your cake would be unique and totally stunning!

  57. dora
    Posted 2 Oct ’12 at 13:34 | #

    when i see your posts i always think “how i wish to be their friends and live nearby of course, only to taste the marvellouse food you make! Shleppp!!nham nham!
    Congratulations for all you have achieved
    dora

  58. Eve
    Posted 2 Oct ’12 at 15:35 | #

    Congratulations!
    I’m eager to try this recipe, but wondering if you could suggest anything for a saffron substitute.
    Thank you kindly.

  59. Posted 2 Oct ’12 at 17:16 | #

    Congratulations. The cake looks amazing and I imagine it tastes amazing too.
    Well done!

  60. Posted 2 Oct ’12 at 18:49 | #

    Oh my, that cake is absolutely gorgeous! And congratulations on 3 years!

  61. Posted 4 Oct ’12 at 19:33 | #

    Yum, this looks amazing.

  62. Posted 10 Oct ’12 at 18:38 | #

    Haven’t tried recipe, can’t wait. Will post later.

    • Posted 9 Apr ’13 at 11:12 | #

      This looks really good although i’m not overly keen on figs so I may try and make this using a replacement fruit for the top.

  63. Posted 20 Oct ’12 at 17:39 | #

    Congratulations!! This cake looks incredible. I can’t wait to try out the recipe. Thank you.

  64. Posted 31 Oct ’12 at 22:44 | #

    This has a delicious hazelnut flavor, and was surprisingly easy to make. It’s also very healthy, for a cake! I used farm eggs, so I actually needed nine eggs to make it workable.

  65. Posted 7 Nov ’12 at 20:28 | #

    Oh you sweetest dears! What a gorgeous recipe and gorgeous sentiments to match. We are here because you are brilliant and inspring and we want more more more! Three more years? 33 more years! ;) And more food, and babies, and books and blessings to the world. You make it all happen, while shining all the while.

    Much love to you three, angels here on earth…
    Always your friend,
    Sarah B

  66. Emma
    Posted 25 Nov ’12 at 13:00 | #

    Supergod! vilket enkelt recept ovh precis som ni skriver så behöver man inte så mkt sötma från cremen, det mesta kommer från botten. Keep it up!

  67. Posted 8 Dec ’12 at 15:03 | #

    Wow!
    Your cake looks amazing and i find your blog so inspiring.
    I didn’t think it was possible to make so lovely cakes without using sugar and so on… but you guys knailed it!

    My blog is a bit the opposite, but I hope you’ll check it out anyway.

    Keep up the good work!
    Liva, 13, Copenhagen.

  68. Posted 9 Dec ’12 at 12:40 | #

    Wow that cake looks amazing, I love that you have used saffron in it :) Saffron and yoghurt go together very well, its a surprising combination and this is the first time Ive seen it in a cake like this !

  69. Carina
    Posted 16 Dec ’12 at 07:23 | #

    This looks delicious, might have to surprise my man with it for his birthday! I’m also wondering if that cake stand is a particular brand? (I seem to have fallen in love with it!!)
    Thanks!

  70. Kay
    Posted 4 Jan ’13 at 05:12 | #

    Lovely writing,I can’t wait to read more! I also can’t wait to try the recipe. Thanks for sharing your life and your food.

  71. Amanda
    Posted 16 Jul ’13 at 22:45 | #

    I made this today! There’s no such thing as fresh figs out of season where I live (rural southside Virginia), BUT I made a dried fig compote with red wine and balsamic and light brown sugar…. it was fabulous. Also, I didn’t have hazelnuts, so I roasted and chopped some raw almonds I had. JUST as good as the hazelnuts, I think. The filling… oh my. My whole family loved this.

  72. Anca
    Posted 29 Aug ’13 at 18:13 | #

    Congratulations for the recipe! I want to prepare the cake this evening and I was wondering if I can use turmeric instead of saffron.
    Thank you,
    Anca

  73. Posted 12 Jun ’14 at 12:39 | #

    I have saffron threads, would it be the same if I blended it into a powder?

    Thanks!

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