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Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Spanish Delight Cake | San Marcos Cake(Step by Step Pics) ~ 10 th Blog Anniversary Special !!

Happy blog anniversary to me !!!
This day marks my first post in 2011 and its been 10 years here. Never did I imagine of such a blessed day in blogging. My initial trials were just to bookmark and keep my tried recipes stored somewhere. But as days and years passed by with all your love and encouragement, I tried so many recipes that I hardly could have thought of trying out. All thank to my friends, readers and my family for the continued support till day. I feel to have improved a lot since 2011 in terms of cooking, photography and jotting down recipes and still learning many things. Thanks again dears and I hope to see you all around in my space in future too. 

Today's virtual treat is a Spanish Delight Cake or a pastry cake I must say, which I wished to try since long the traditional way. I finally made this cake on my birthday and it was worth trying out this cake. We totally loved the cake. There is a mild chocolaty layer, caramelized praline layer and whipped cream with soaked layers of sponge cake in between. Sounds interesting? Read further to know the history and method of preparation.

Spanish delight Cake or spanish traditional cake dates back to 12th century which was made in a convent of San Marcos. The cake has very classic preparations with a soft sponge cake layer, vanilla whipped cream, a chocolate whipped cream, sugar syrup and a sweet egg yolk layer. I saw many you tube videos to prepare this cake but mostly people have skipped making the sweet egg yolk layer but i wanted to try it the traditional way and so I have adapted this recipe from here. Though the cake is very simple to make but the only extra effort is the sweet egg yolk preparation that you can prepare ahead and refrigerate. 

The sweet egg yolk adds a wonderful touch to the cake and I think the caramelized sugar using cooking torch would add an extra ordinary feel too. But I didn't have a cooking torch to caramelize so added praline in the center. That's the only thing I changed in the recipe, rest all is the same. I have made the cake in a 6' pan and so halved the ingredients but the cake looked tall compared to a 8' cake. The sponge cake is cut in three layers and the first layer is filled with chocolate whipped cream and the second layer is topped with vanilla whipped cream and finally the sweet egg yolk is poured in the center and the sides are covered with sliced toasted almonds. Quite simple right? Please do try this yummy cake on your special occasions. We loved every bit of the cake and I must say the cake tastes best the next day.

Preparation time ~ 30 minutes
Baking time ~ 30 minutes
Frosting time ~ 30 minutes
Author ~ Julie
Serves ~ 800 g cake
for sponge cake
maida 3/4 cup
corn flour 1 tbsp
baking powder 3/4 tsp
baking soda 1/4 tsp
salt a pinch
powdered sugar 3/4 cup
eggs -3
vanilla essence 1 tsp
any neutral oil 2 tbsp

for soaking 
sugar 1/2 cup
water 1 cup

sweet egg yolk layer
egg yolks 2
sugar 90 g or 1/2 cup
water 1/8 cup
vanilla extract 1/2 tsp
corn starch 3.5 g or 1 1/4 tsp
lemon juice few drops 

for frosting
whipping cream 1.5 cups
cocoa powder 1 tbsp
powdered sugar 1 tbsp

for decoration
*praline 2 tbsp 
or caramelize sugar using cooking torch
sliced almonds 1/2 cup


How to make the sponge cake ? Refer the detailed pics here in this post on sponge cake.
  • Sift the flours with baking powder, baking soda, salt thrice and keep aside. In another bowl, add the eggs and powdered sugar, beat until creamy and pale (may take around 5 minutes). Add in the oil and vanilla essence, mix well.
  • Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F and line a 6' tray with parchment paper and oil the sides, dust with flour and keep ready.
  • To this add the sifted flour mixture in three to four batches and combine well using a spatula without much deflating the air from beaten egg mixture. 
  • Transfer the batter to the prepared cake tin and tap the cake tin several times(20-25) to release the trapped air bubbles. Then place in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes. Insert a tooth pick in the center of the pan and check if done (Mine was done in 25 minutes, I pre-heat the oven by using the both rods on. Initial bake time was changed to lower rod along for 5 minutes and then changed back to both rods on).
  • Cool the cake on a wire rack and transfer out from the pan. Cover with a parchment paper once cooled completely and then wrap with a cling wrap or aluminium foil. I left overnight before frosting.
How to make whipped cream and chocolate cream? I have shared the detailed step by step pics of making whipping cream here in this recipe, pls refer.

I chilled the beater blades and bowl in the fridge overnight and thawed the cream in the fridge overnight(earlier it was in the freezer). Remove the blades, bowl and cream from the fridge. Pour the cream to the bowl. 
With the beater blades attached beat the cream for 4-5 minutes until it turns stiff peaks (Remove 1/3 rd of the cream when there are soft peaks to mix with cocoa powder and powdered sugar. Incorporate the cocoa in the whipping cream first and then beat. Beat this mix separately in another bowl). Both creams should be beaten to stiff peaks.The test to make sure its done is by tilting the bowl upside down and find that the cream doesn't move at all and stays stiff. Immediately transfer the cream to the refrigerator till use by covering with a lid or cling wrap (I haven't added any sugar in the whipping cream layer as the cream has sugar in it).

How to make sugar syrup?
Make a sugar syrup using 1/2 cup sugar and 1 cup water. Put this on a stove and heat till the sugar is dissolved. Put off stove and leave to cool completely.

How to prepare the sweet egg yolk layer?
  • Add the sugar 90 g or 1/2 cup and water(1/8 cup), add in vanilla essence and keep on heat until sugar dissolves with few drops of lemon juice.Boil this mix for 2 minutes and switch off leave to temper slightly. 

  • Beat the egg yolks (2) with corn starch 3.5 g or 1 1/4 tsp vigorously in another bowl until its in homogenized state(pic no.7). Pour the sugar mix in continous thread with a whisk or fork. Don't stop stirring in between as it can form lumps. 
  • Now using a double boiler method, cook the egg yolk. Place water in a sauce pan and when it boils place the egg yolk mix and beat continuously until the mixture thickens and turns pale yellow in color(may take 2 minutes). Remove from heat to cool.

How to assemble the cake?
  • Once the cake is cooled, the cake can be cut in two or three layers as per the height of the cake. My cake was best for a two layer cake, but my kids wanted to make it a three layer, so I somehow managed to cut it in three. Use a serrated bread knife or twine to cut the layers. I used a serrated knife. Be very careful when you cut the cake in layers, as the cake is very soft and delicate.

  • Then place a dollop of cream on the cake base and place the base on the turn table. Place the first layer of the cake. Add pieces of parchment paper over the sides of the cake all around to get a neat finish at the end. Add sugar syrup on the first layer and then place the chocolate whipped cream on top of this layer and spread using an offset spatula. 
  • Add the second layer and pour sugar syrup on this layer. Add the plain whipped cream and  finally place the third layer, add the sugar syrup and spread the cream on the sides. Spread gently because you may get crumbs on the offset spatula. 
  • Pour the sweet egg yolk on the top of the third layer in the centre. Try leaving a 1" gap around the borders so that the piping becomes easy, and the egg layer spreads a little.
  • Once you have finished a crumb coat, refrigerate the cake for half to an hour before you add more layers of frosting.
  • After an hour, remove and add more cream to cover the sides and top. Using a scraper or offset spatula, give a neat finish.  
  • Finally, remove the parchment paper placed on the base of the cake. Pipe in the rosette using a piping bag around the cake and place sliced almonds on the sides. If you are using a cooking torch to caramelize sugar, then sprinkle a little sugar and caramelize the sugar using the torch. I didn't have a cooking torch so tried adding praline which was good to add an extra crunch to the cake. Spread the praline in the centre over the sweet egg yolk layer. Refrigerate the cake for 3-4 hours before you slice and enjoy !!

* I used 2 tbsp of cashews and 2 tbsp of almonds with 1/2 cup sugar caramelized. Toast the nuts in a dry pan for about 3-4 minutes on low medium flame. Remove from pan and then to the same pan add the sugar (1/2 cup) and wait to caramelize. When the sugar is caramelized to golden brown, then add the toasted nuts to this and give a quick stir. Remove on a ghee smeared tray or on a parchment paper. Smoothen down as quickly as possible to flatten the nuts. Leave to cool completely. Then break the nuts and add this to a ziploc bag. Whack this using a rolling pin to lightly crush the nuts and to make the praline. Reserve in air tight containers at room temperature till use. For more specific,detailed praline recipe with step by step pics is here.
* I haven't toasted the sliced almonds but you can always toast and use.



Angie's Recipes said... Best Blogger Tips

The cake looks so beautiful, delicious and celebration worthy! Happy Blog Anniversary, Julie!

Gloria Fernandes said... Best Blogger Tips

Happy Blog anniversary ..The cake is just awesome

Suja Manoj said... Best Blogger Tips

Happy Anniversary Julie. Gorgeous cake, super yum.

Agiwangliu Newmai said... Best Blogger Tips

Happy blog anniversary Jules๐Ÿ’– ๐Ÿ’• keep us cooking with your practical tips and recipes

Aju said... Best Blogger Tips

Tried and came out really well

Thermofan. Marisa G. said... Best Blogger Tips

I missed our famous "Tarta de San Marcos". No words to explain how beautiful is yours. Delicious.