Rice Cooker Castella Sponge Cake with Saffron
Castella, or honey sponge cake, was introduced to Japan during the 16th century by the Portuguese merchants. Originally known as Pão de Castela (bread from Castile), variations exist in Europe and Asia. This rice flour version is baked in a rice cooker. Use the eggs at room temperature so that the batter rises properly.
Unlike other sponge cakes where eggs are whipped separately, whole eggs are beaten in Génoise cakes. Using a hand mixer at a high speed, beat the eggs in a bowl over 104°F (40°C) water to make them moist. Add sugar in 3 portions and continue to beat until the batter becomes foamy. Adjust the speed to low and continue to beat one additional minute to make the foam extra fine and smooth.
All rice flour is naturally gluten-free. Make this dish completely gluten-free by using gluten-free substitutes for other ingredients as needed.
|1 tablespoon (15ml)||hot water|
|5||eggs, at room temperature|
|⅔ cup (120g)||sugar|
|3 tablespoons (63g)||honey|
|1½ tablespoons (22.5ml)||milk|
|1 cup (150g)||rice flour|
|Vegetable oil as needed|
In a small bowl, combine saffron and hot water. Set aside.
In a large bowl, beat eggs and sugar with a hand mixer at high speed until pale and foamy (see Tips).
In a small bowl, combine honey and milk and heat in a microwave. Add to the batter. Add 1 tablespoon of saffron infused water and continue to beat at medium speed for 30 seconds.
Add rice flour and continue to beat at low speed until no longer powdery, about 3-4 minutes.
Grind 1/8 teaspoon dry saffron with your fingers and add to the batter along with the remaining saffron. Stir with a rubber spatula.
Coat the inner pot of the rice cooker with oil. Pour the batter and drop the pot lightly on the surface several times to remove air bubbles. Set in the rice cooker and turn on the switch.
When done, check the doneness by inserting the skewer in the middle. If still sticky, turn on the switch again.
Serve warm or at room temperature.
- This recipe uses US customary units. Measurement equivalents include: 1 teaspoon = 5ml, 1 tablespoon = 15ml, and 1 US cup = 237ml or 8fl oz. (1 metric cup = 250ml or 8.5fl oz.)
- The cooking time using microwave oven in this recipe is based on 1,000W in the US.
- The temperature and baking time may be different depending on the oven used. Please adjust accordingly.