Just when I feel like I know all that there is to know about a sponge cake, I come across a recipe for this beautiful, light and airy sponge that doesn’t have any butter, oil, baking powder or soda! It relies completely on how well you whisk the egg and sugar together. It’s essentially just eggs, flour and sugar – three ingredients! I’ve baked this cake using_ Elena’s recipe _twice in the last couple of weeks, adding vanilla extract to the batter and topping it with a white chocolate ganache when I made it for a friend. These pictures are from the second time that I baked it, this time for Papa’s birthday, and worked some lemon zest into the batter and topped it quite simply with some icing sugar. The topping of roughly toppled pomegranate seeds remained a constant both times. What can I say? I have a soft spot for fresh, seasonal fruits!
This is also perhaps the first time in recent years that I baked a non-chocolate cake for Papa Bear’s birthday… yep, that’s what I call him, we are the three bears!
I’d posted this picture on _Instagram _while whisking up the eggs and sugar in my stand mixer, and thank God for it because you need a good 15 minutes of whisking to get it to this consistency. A hand-mixer will work too, but you ought to have a really strong arm if you want to do this just with a balloon whisk!
A photo posted by Tarika Singh (@tarikasingh) on Sep 29, 2015 at 12:22am PDT.
The trick is to get it to a light, shiny and voluminous consistency and fold in the flour in batches, otherwise, you’ll just lose all the air beaten into the batter. And whatever you do, please don’t tap or use a spatula to level the batter when you finally get it into the cake pan because as you can see from the pictures, the batter evens out while baking to reveal a nice, flat layer.
For the last few months, I’ve delved deeply into the flavours of Italian cooking and baking. These bold flavours of simple ingredients have been my calling. I even taught a class on Italian Baking in Mumbai last month. Together, we baked a gluten free Tangerine Cake; we made Biscotti the way Italians do, the Ricotta Cookies were a big hit and everyone got their hands dirty making their own Focaccia from scratch! Look, I even have a video for you. If you want to stay posted on future classes, drop me an email on firstname.lastname@example.org asking me to add you to my mailing list, and since I’m not an e-commerce giant looking to sell electronics during the Diwali holidays, you can be rest assured that I won’t be misusing these addresses! Of course, I update Facebook, Instagram, Twitter now Snapchat (new and so much fun!) about classes.
Focaccia from my Italian Baking class.
We’re getting so close to all the Diwali madness, I have to ask you, what are your plans? Are you traveling or planning get-togethers at home? This Italian Sponge Cake could make for a great addition to keep ready at home if you have guests dropping by, it’s like a showstopper! It never hurts to impress people with the Italian name of this cake – pan di spagna!
Recipe from As Easy As Apple Pie