Catalan Salt Pinch Cake

Don’t let the title fool you. The cake I made this past weekend, from Rose’s Heavenly Cakes, has nothing to do with salt. In fact, there’s no salt in it. There’s a lot of egg in it, but also a lot of almond, and a lot of air! I’d been ignoring this cake for a while (the rest of the Heavenly Cake Bakers baked it back in November 2009). My reluctance to bake it can be attributed to 2 things: The name, and the lack of frosting. I shouldn’t have passed it up. It’s easy to make (though time consuming) if you let your mixer do the work.

I figured it was time I made this cake, in my quest to bake my way through Rose’s Heavenly Cakes. I’m now only one cake away from completing the sponge cake chapter, and since the white gold passion génoise is on the menu for 2 weeks from now, I can finish at least one chapter this month!

Cooled, and a bit deflated, but delicious

Start, as always, with the mise en place. You need ground almonds, eggs, sugar, and cake flour. There are also 2 egg whites hiding out in the mixer, off-camera.

Mise en Place

Beat the egg whites into soft peaks, then add the lion’s share of the sugar, making a thick and glossy meringue.

Meringue

Add the ground almonds…

Adding Almonds

…then fold them in, using the whisk beater.

Almonds mixed into Meringue

Next, you add the eggs, 2 tablespoons at a time. Because I’m notoriously bad at estimating quantities, I used a little measuring cup for this. You can see my 2 step process in the picture below.

Adding eggs, 2 tbsp at a time

Beat for 2 minutes between each 2 tablespoon addition. This ends up taking about 20 minutes or so. In the meantime, you can’t really walk away, so I grabbed my kitchen stool and sat and read some more of Les Misérables while I was waiting for the mixer to do its thing.

Into the oven it goes, with a full parchment lining. I had a big moment of trepidation when I tried to lift the cake by the parchment. It looked like the parchment was going to let go, for sure. Luckily, it didn’t.

Right out of the oven and already starting to sink

This cake is mostly eggs, almonds, and air, and to my mind, that makes it downright healthy. I mean, eggs and almonds are protein and the good kinds of fats, right? 😀

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3 thoughts on “Catalan Salt Pinch Cake

  1. Good point, Mendy. I missed that crucial piece of information, didn’t I? 🙂 I did like this cake. It was surprisingly moist, and I love almonds, so having that be the predominant flavour worked perfectly for me. It’s almost like a moist almond-y angel food cake.

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