The cake of Saint James – a medieval masterpiece that pairs perfectly with a mid-morning cortado coffee.
Its exact origins and specific recipe are long gone in the winds of time, but the celebration of the patron saint of Spain continues, especially on the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage and in the Galician capital Santiago de Compostela.
I’m not a huge fan of cakes or even baking them, but this simple gluten-free almond recipe has me hooked. It feels a touch more, grown-up. I’ve spent a while experimenting and have finally settled on this recipe.
- 6 eggs
- 250g ground almonds
- 250g golden caster sugar
- ¼ tsp almond extract
- zest of 1 unwaxed orange
- zest of 1 unwaxed lemon
- icing sugar to dust
- Preheat your oven to 160°C (140°C fan)
- Grease and line an 8 or 9-inch springform baking tin.
- Separate the egg yolks and whites.
- Whisk the yolks with the golden caster sugar until pale and fluffy.
- Mix in the almonds, zest and extract.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
- Gently combine the two mixtures and fill your baking tin.
- Bake for about 40-45 minutes.
- Rest the cake in its tin for about 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
10. When completely cool, dust the top of the cake using icing sugar and a stencil of the cross of Saint James.
Serve with a little crème fraîche if you like. I certainly do.