Sunday, November 8, 2009

Perfect Pan di Spagna - Sponge Cake

The 'secret' to a perfect result is in the beating of the eggs and the sugar. It is during this stage that air is incorporated to the mixture and that is essential for the cake to turn out really soft and sponge like without using any yeast.Eggs and sugar have to be beaten for quite a while, never less than 15 mins, with a good beater until the mixture is frothy and a pale yellow in colour. To test that it has been beaten enough, if you let some of the mixture fall from the beater back into the mixture, it remains 'sitting' on top for a while. If this doesn’t happen it means that the eggs have not been beaten enough and you need to beat them much more.

Don't forget the salt - often omitted - as this helps the eggs to become light and fluffy

Another  phase where you have to be careful is the addition of the flour. This has to be sifted extremely well and added to the egg mixture using a wooden spoon with a gentle but fast movement, stirring from bottom to top, folding in as much air as possible

While cooking, the oven must NEVER be opened as this will cause the cake to deflate. Before removing it from the oven, check that the sides have pulled inwards from the pan, check that the cake is ready using a skewer poked into the middle of the cake. If it comes out absolutely clean then the cake is ready

It is also a good idea that when the cake is ready, turn off the oven but leave the cake there for about 10 mins so that it can cool down slowly. After that, turn the cake out of the pan and put it on a cooling rack

6 eggs
180gms sugar
75 gms flour
75 gms corn flour (corn starch for Americans)
Pinch of salt
(optional - grated rind of 1/2 lemon)

Put eggs and sugar into a bowl and beat for about 15 mins until you have a frothy foamy mixture Add the flours by sifting them into the mixture and folding gently with a wooden spoon.
Put the mixture into a well greased cake tin, level out the mixture and cook in a pre heated over at 150C for about 40 mins

This can be used as a base for tiramisu or trifle and is also delicious on its own with just a dusting of powdered sugar

1 comment:

  1. Ah Lou, I m missing my kitchen. Will try this recipe when I get back in December:) For sure!!!


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All the recipes here have either been sent to me, adapted by me or found on the web. If I know the source I always give credit to the author/website. If you know of a source I may have missed please let me know.