Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze Recipe - Authentic Taste of Albania

Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze

Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze Recipe - Authentic Taste of Albania
Region / culture: Albania | Preparation time: 20 minutes | Cooking time: 30 minutes | Servings: 12


Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze
Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze

The Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze is a delightful dessert that combines the rich, earthy flavors of walnuts with the bright, citrusy notes of lemon. This cake is moist, flavorful, and has a unique texture that comes from the combination of yogurt and buttermilk in the batter. The lemon glaze adds a sweet and tangy finish that perfectly complements the nutty cake. This recipe is perfect for those who appreciate a dessert that is not overly sweet but is rich in flavors and textures.


The Albanian Walnut Cake is a traditional dessert that has been enjoyed in Albania and the surrounding regions for generations. Walnuts are abundant in Albania, making them a staple ingredient in many Albanian desserts. The addition of lemon to the cake is a reflection of the Mediterranean influences in Albanian cuisine, which often incorporates fresh citrus flavors. This cake is typically served during special occasions and celebrations, but it is simple enough to be enjoyed at any time.


-- Glaze

How to prepare

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
  2. Cream butter and sugar together in a large bowl. Add eggs. Mix.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine yogurt and buttermilk. In another bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and soda.
  4. Add the yogurt mixture and flour mixture alternatively to the butter mixture, blending well.
  5. Add lemon rind and cinnamon. Mix well.
  6. Butter a 9"x13" baking pan.
  7. Pour the batter and bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  8. Make the glaze by simmering together all the ingredients, covered, for about 15 minutes.
  9. When the cake is done, remove it from the oven, turn the oven off, pour the glaze over the hot cake, and return it to the oven for about 10 minutes.


  • For a gluten-free version, substitute the flour with your favorite gluten-free flour blend.
  • Add orange zest instead of lemon for a different citrus twist.
  • Incorporate chopped dates or figs into the batter for added sweetness and texture.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure the best results when making this cake, consider the following tips:

- Toast the walnuts before chopping them to enhance their flavor.

- Use room temperature ingredients (eggs, butter, yogurt, and buttermilk) to ensure a smooth batter.

- Sift the dry ingredients to avoid lumps in the batter and to ensure an even rise.

- Be careful not to overmix the batter once the flour is added to keep the cake tender.

- Allow the cake to cool slightly before applying the glaze so it doesn't become too soggy.

Serving Suggestions

This cake is best served at room temperature or slightly warmed. It pairs beautifully with a cup of coffee or tea. For an extra indulgent treat, serve it with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Cooking Techniques

The key techniques in this recipe include creaming the butter and sugar, which introduces air into the batter for a lighter cake, and alternating the addition of dry and wet ingredients to ensure a smooth, well-incorporated batter.

Ingredient Substitutions

Use olive oil or coconut oil instead of butter for a dairy-free version.

- Substitute almond milk mixed with a teaspoon of vinegar for buttermilk for a vegan option.

- Use a flaxseed or chia seed mixture as an egg substitute for an egg-free version.

Make Ahead Tips

The cake can be baked a day in advance and kept covered at room temperature. Prepare the glaze just before serving to ensure it is fresh and has the right consistency.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the cake on a decorative platter and garnish with lemon slices and additional chopped walnuts for an elegant presentation. A dusting of powdered sugar can also add a touch of sophistication.

Pairing Recommendations

This cake pairs well with a sweet dessert wine or a light, citrusy cocktail. For a non-alcoholic option, consider a lemon-flavored sparkling water to complement the cake's citrus notes.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store the cake in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. To reheat, place slices on a baking sheet and warm in a preheated oven at 300°F (150°C) for about 10 minutes.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A serving of Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze contains approximately 350 calories. The calories are primarily derived from the fats and carbohydrates in the recipe.


A single serving of Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze contains approximately 45 grams of carbohydrates. The primary sources of carbohydrates in this recipe are flour and sugar, which provide the cake's structure and sweetness, respectively.


This cake is relatively high in fats, with about 20 grams per serving. The fats come from the butter, eggs, and walnuts, contributing to the cake's moistness and rich flavor.


Each serving of this cake provides about 6 grams of protein. The protein sources in this recipe include eggs, flour, and walnuts.

Vitamins and minerals

The cake contains several vitamins and minerals, notably from the walnuts and eggs. Walnuts are a good source of magnesium, phosphorus, and vitamin B6, while eggs provide vitamin D, B12, and selenium.


This recipe contains common allergens: nuts (walnuts), dairy (butter, yogurt, buttermilk), and eggs. Individuals with allergies to these ingredients should avoid this cake or seek suitable substitutions.


Overall, the Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze is a rich, flavorful dessert that provides a good balance of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. It also contains beneficial vitamins and minerals from the walnuts and eggs. However, it is relatively high in calories and contains common allergens.


The Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze is a delightful dessert that combines the rich flavors of walnuts with the bright zest of lemon. This recipe is steeped in tradition and offers a wonderful balance of textures and flavors. With tips for making, serving, and storing the cake, as well as variations to accommodate dietary restrictions, this cake is sure to be a versatile addition to any baker's repertoire.

How did I get this recipe?

I can still remember the exact moment I stumbled upon this recipe for Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze. It was a warm summer day, the sun shining brightly through the windows of my kitchen as I sifted through my collection of old cookbooks. I had always loved experimenting with new recipes and flavors, and that day I was feeling particularly adventurous.

As I flipped through the pages of an old cookbook that had been passed down to me from my grandmother, a recipe caught my eye. It was for a traditional Albanian Walnut Cake with a zesty lemon glaze. The combination of walnuts and lemon sounded intriguing, and I knew I had to give it a try.

I gathered all the ingredients I would need and set to work in the kitchen. The recipe was simple enough, but as I mixed and measured, I couldn't help but think back to all the different recipes I had learned over the years. Some had come from cookbooks, others from friends and family, and a few I had picked up from my travels around the world.

One of my favorite things about cooking was the way it connected me to different cultures and traditions. Each recipe told a story, a glimpse into the lives and tastes of people from faraway places. And as I baked that Albanian Walnut Cake, I felt like I was embarking on a culinary journey of my own.

The scent of toasted walnuts filled the air as the cake baked in the oven, and I couldn't wait to drizzle it with the tangy lemon glaze. When it was finally done, I took a bite and was instantly transported to the sunny shores of Albania. The cake was rich and nutty, the lemon glaze adding a bright burst of flavor that balanced perfectly with the sweetness of the cake.

I knew then that this recipe would become a staple in my repertoire, a dish to be shared with friends and family for years to come. And so, I made a note in my cookbook, adding my own little tweaks and adjustments to the recipe, making it truly my own.

Since that day, I have made the Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze countless times, each time bringing a smile to the faces of those who taste it. And as I serve it to my loved ones, I can't help but think of the journey that led me to this recipe – the people I have met, the flavors I have experienced, and the joy that cooking has brought into my life.

So here's to culinary adventures, to trying new things and exploring new flavors. And here's to the Albanian Walnut Cake with Lemon Glaze, a recipe that will always hold a special place in my heart.


| Albanian Desserts | Albanian Recipes | Allspice Recipes | Buttermilk Recipes | Walnut Recipes | Yogurt Recipes |

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