I wanted to share my absolute all-time favourite cake recipe with you today! It is called Spanish Cake. There is nothing particularly Spanish about it so I have no idea where the name comes from. What I can tell you, however, is that this is a fabulously delicious cake. This is the kind of cake that will have you coming back for seconds and thirds!
It’s a moist cake, flavoured highly with cinnamon and topped with a lush Maple Icing. It’s not a large cake, being only 8 inches square, but every inch of this cake is packed with moreish-ness, just perfect to replace the scones at teatime! This is a tried and true recipe; an old family favourite, and I believe it is destined to become a favourite with your family as well!
This is such a delicious cake that I once baked it three times in one week. I suppose that would also make it somewhat of a dangerous cake, in that it is incredibly difficult, almost impossible to resist!
This is one cake you will find yourself getting up in the middle of the night to enjoy a small sliver of. The small sliver will then become two small slivers, and so on. I am sure you get the picture!
What You Need To Make Spanish Cake
|FOR THE CAKE|
|1 cup all-purpose flour|
|2 large free-range eggs, separated|
|1 tsp ground cinnamonT|
|½ cup butter, at room temperature|
|1 cup sugar|
|1 tsp baking powder|
|½ cup milk|
|FOR THE ICING|
|¼ cup butter|
|½ cup of maple sugar, or loosely packed brown sugar|
|2 TBS milk|
|1 cup of icing sugar|
You may find it a bit difficult to get Maple sugar. If you can’t find it, you may use soft light brown sugar in its place. Just add a touch of maple flavouring to the icing instead to give it that maple touch!
Hints And Tips
If you follow my handy hints and tips your cake is sure to turn out beautifully moist and delicious!
1. Read through the recipe several times. This helps to familiarise you with any equipment, ingredients, or techniques you may require to put it all together!
2. Assemble all of your ingredients together in one place prior to beginning to make the Spanish cake. This can help to prevent you from leaving out anything integral to the recipe. Many cakes have been ruined because the baker left out the baking powder!
3. Butter your cake tin really well and then line it with paper. I like to leave a bit of an overhang so that I can lift the cake out easily when it is done. There is no need to dust the pan with flour in this case. I confess, I am not fond of the flour taste on the outside of a baked cake, leftover from dusting the tin with flour. This eliminates that hazard completely.
4. I like to make sure all of my ingredients are at room temperature. This is a personal choice, but I think you do get a slightly better end result. The egg whites beat up with much more volume at any rate!
5. Sift the flour, cinnamon, and baking powder together before you start. This ensures that the baking powder is evenly distributed and helps to aerate the flour, giving you a lighter textured cake as a result.
6. Make sure your eggbeaters are scrupulously clean when beating the egg whites. If they are contaminated in any way your whites won’t be as light and fluffy and in some cases won’t even beat up at all! Beat them only until stiff, but not dry.
7. I like to use an electric mixer to beat/cream together the butter and the sugar for the cake. You want to make sure the butter becomes light in colour. This step also ensures that the sugar almost melts into the flour.
8. Beat in the egg yolks only one at a time. This helps to prevent the batter from curdling. If your batter does curdle, stir in a spoonful of the flour which will rectify the problem.
9. Add the flour and milk to the creamed mixture alternately, beginning and ending with flour.
10. Do not over-fold the egg whites into the batter. The mixture should appear even, with a few white streaks, but no large white lumps. Always do this by hand, using a metal spoon and a cutting motion. Try not to stir.
11. Try not to open the oven door while the cake is baking. This can affect the end result. Your cake may even sink in the middle.
12. To test done use a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cake. It should come out clean. It will also spring back when lightly touched.
13. Cool the cake out of the pan on a wire rack. Leaving it in the pan to cool will result in a soggy cake.
14. Don’t ice the cake until it is thoroughly cooled. You also want the icing to have cooled before spreading it over the cake.
15. When making the icing begin with the burner heat on low so nothing scorches. Once the sugar has melted into the milk and it comes to a boil, remove it from the heat immediately.
16. Don’t stir in the icing sugar until the milk and sugar mixture have cooled to at least lukewarm.
17. If you choose to top your Spanish cake with chopped nuts, toast them first and allow them to cool completely before sprinkling on top. A few minutes in a hot oven toasts them perfectly!
How To Make Spanish Cake
Preheat the oven to 350*F. Butter an 8-inch square baking tin and line with baking paper. Set aside.
Beat the egg whites until stiff and set aside.
Sift the flour, baking powder, and cinnamon into a bowl. Set aside.
Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time.
Beat in the flour mixture along with the milk, making alternate additions. (3 dry and two wet) Mix well together.
Fold in the egg whites.
Spread the batter in the prepared baking tin
Bake in the heated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top bounces back when lightly touched and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. The cake should also have begun to pull away from the sides a bit.
Remove from the oven. Cool in the pan for five minutes then lift out onto a wire rack to finish cooling completely.
Place the butter for the icing in a saucepan and melt over low heat.
Add the maple sugar and heat gently over low heat for 2 minutes, until the sugar has melted. Add the milk.
Bring to the boil, then remove from the stove and let cool. Beat in the icing sugar and spread onto the cooled cake.
This truly is a lovely cake and makes for a wonderful dessert for the family on any night, simply cut into squares. For special occasions, you may want to add a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a nice lemon mousse.
You can leave the icing off altogether if you want just a snacking kind of a cake. It is perfect cut into squares and packed into lunches.
I love to enjoy Spanish cake all on its own with a nice hot cuppa mid-morning or afternoon. A little bit indulgent perhaps, but you are only going to live once!
So, there you have it, my all-time-favourite cake. Whenever I bake one of these, I feel a celebration coming on! Yes, it is just that good! Butter and moist with a lovely cinnamon flavour. It may not be a huge cake, but what it lacks in size it more than makes up for in taste!
I can almost guarantee that this cake will become a firm family favourite with you and yours as well! I just know that you are all really going to enjoy it!
- For the cake:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ cup butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large free-range eggs, separated
- ½ cup milk
- For the icing:
- ¼ cup butter
- ½ cup of maple sugar, or loosely packed brown sugar
- 2 TBS milk
- 1 cup of icing sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350*F. Butter an 8-inch square baking tin and line with baking paper. Set aside.
- Beat the egg WHITES until stiff and set aside.
- Sift the flour, baking powder, and cinnamon into a bowl. Set aside.
- Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg YOLKS one at a time.
- Beat in the flour mixture along with the milk making alternate additions. (3 dry and two wet)
- Mix well together.
- Fold in the egg whites.
- Spread the batter in the prepared baking tin.
- Bake in the heated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top bounces back when lightly touched and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. The cake should also have begun to pull away from the sides a bit.
- Remove from the oven. Cool in the pan for five minutes then lift out onto a wire rack to finish cooling completely.
- Place the butter for the icing in a saucepan and melt over low heat.
- Add the maple sugar and heat gently over low heat for 2 minutes, until the sugar has melted. Add the milk.
- Bring to the boil, then remove from the stove and let cool. Beat in the icing sugar and spread onto the cooled cake.
I like to sprinkle chopped toasted walnuts on top, but that is the Canadian in me liking the flavour of maple walnut.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 538
Marie Rayner is a retired Chef, freelance writer, recipe developer, food blogger, and Cookbook author. She makes her home in Chester, UK, where she lives with her husband, Todd, and their much beloved English Cocker, Mitzie. Her motto is “Life is far too short to eat bad food,” and her goal is to share delicious and easy recipes which anyone can enjoy and cook in the comfort of their own home.