Castella

Castella

By
From
JapanEasy
Makes
8–10 slices
Photographer
Laura Edwards

Castella is one of the most popular sweets in Japan, introduced to the country by Portuguese merchants in 17th century Nagasaki. It is essentially a light sponge, typically enjoyed on its own with tea, but also as part of a dessert, often topped with ice cream, whipped cream and fresh fruit.

Not at all difficult

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
4 eggs, separated
140g golden caster (superfine) sugar
2 tablespoons full-fat (whole) milk
2 tablespoons honey
30g butter, melted, plus a little extra for greasing
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 orange, finely grated zested
140g strong white (bread) flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Using an electric mixer if you have one, whisk the egg whites until frothy, then gradually shake in the sugar, whisking constantly, until firm peaks form.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix the egg yolks, milk, honey, melted butter, vanilla and orange zest together, then stir this into the meringue. Fold in the flour, a little bit at a time, until everything is smooth and well mixed.
  3. Line a 450 g loaf tin with greaseproof paper lightly greased with butter. Pour the batter into the tin and shake it gently to level it out. Drop the tin a few times on the worktop to bang out air bubbles.
  4. Bake for about 40 minutes, rotating the tin halfway through cooking. Remove and leave to cool for 5–10 minutes before tipping out, upside down, onto kitchen paper. Leave to cool completely before slicing into neat rectangles.
  5. Serve with ice cream, whipped cream, fruit, miso butterscotch sauce or brown sugar syrup.
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