Pan di Spagna or Sponge Cake is a staple pastry recipe in Italy. That in every Italian household this dessert or dolce has been made for birthdays or special occasions. A simple recipe, but many times the simplest of recipes require a lot more attention! The trickiest part is keeping the cake light and fluffy – no yeast or baking powder is used – and the eggs allow for the airy-ness in the cake. Many do not know that low and behold, this recipe originates from Italy in particular Genova. It’s original name was Pâte Génoise, but quickly changed it’s name once a Genovese chef was called to visit the King’s court in Spain in the 1700s. After which the Spainish adored this cake and introduced it around the world. This cake can be combined with fresh fruit, cream, chocolate, frosting, all suiting whatever the occasion may be.
Difficulty: Medium Prep Time: 25 minutes Cook Time: 40 minutes
160 grams of White Sugar
160 grams of Flour 00
3 dl of Fresh Cream
150 grams of Mascarpone Cheese
375 grams of Fresh Fruit (Berries)
100 grams of Powdered Sugar
Butter (for the pie pans)
2 Vanilla Beans
Preparation for the cake:
- Whip eggs, and add in the vanilla. With a mixer or with a whisk continuously mix the eggs in the same direction, adding in little by little the sugar. The mixing should take about 15 to 20 minutes, making sure the sugar is correctly absorbed into the egg, should be an airy and fluffy consistency.
- Sift the flour and add again little by little to the egg and sugar mixture.
- Butter and flour the pie pan, then add the dough. Cook at 350F for 25 minutes.
Preparation for the cream:
- Wash the berries, set aside half of the berries. Use the berries to make a marmalade with 1/2 powdered sugar and a tablespoon of water. Mix it all in a blender or mixer until a liquid, set aside.
- Whip the fresh cream to make peaks with the mascarpone cheese and the other half of powdered sugar.
- Remove cake from oven, cut in half to make two layers. Spread lemon juice mixed with vanilla bean over each layer. Put the marmalade on top of the top of first layer then the cream mixture on top of that, and finally the rest of berries. Place the second layer on top and do the exact same process on top of that layer. Sprinkle powdered sugar over everything and serve!