Pistachio–rose brittle

Pistachio–rose brittle

New Middle Eastern Food
500 g
Mark Roper

We saw several different kinds of toffee and nut brittles on our journeys around Iran, some flavoured with cardamom, others with honey, others with saffron. This is our version of a thin, crunchy pistachio brittle, with a sprinkling of rose petals added.

This recipe produces a fairly large quantity, but it’s a little tricky to make in small amounts. Brittles are very versatile — you can serve them as is, or crush them to make a crunchy praline topping for desserts or ice creams (keep a bag of it in the freezer for instant gratification).


Quantity Ingredient
200g unsalted pistachio kernels
330g caster sugar
80ml corn syrup
50g unsalted butter
125ml water
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
pinch sea salt
1 orange, grated zest
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
10 edible dried rosebuds, petals separated, (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 160ºC. Roast the pistachios on a baking tray for 10–12 minutes, shaking the tray frequently. You don’t want them to colour, just to dry out a little. Tip into a bowl and cool.
  2. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Combine the caster sugar, corn syrup, butter and water in a heavy-based saucepan over a low heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat, bring to a boil and cook over a medium heat for 15–20 minutes until the mixture is a light golden caramel — if using a candy thermometer, at 160ºC it will be approaching the hard-crack stage. Remove from the heat and immediately stir in the bicarbonate of soda, salt, zest, cardamom and pistachios.
  3. Scrape the mixture into the prepared baking tray and use a spatula to smooth it out as thinly as you can. Sprinkle with rose petals, if using, pressing them gently into the surface of the brittle. Leave to cool completely before breaking into pieces with a rolling pin.
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