January 22, 2019

Food for Thought

This is Japanese “castella,” pound cake introduced to Japan by Portuguese in the 16th century. @kekimoderncakes has a Taiwanese version of it that is very different. Theirs is closer to sponge cake, rather than pound cake. Interestingly, the Taiwanese version is now popular in Japan. On Instagram and YouTube, there are many people baking their own Taiwanese castella.

Visually, what differentiates the Japanese version from the Taiwanese version is the perfectly geometric shape for the former. I’ve always wondered how they make them so perfect. If you bake anything in a baking tin, the center would rise higher. So, I had assumed that they must close the tin at the top, and add the perfect amount of batter to fill it, accounting for the amount of expansion.

But I just looked up the process on YouTube. That’s not what they do. The top is open, yet it comes out perfectly even. They do slice off the edges but only a very small amount (swipe to see). So, it’s still a mystery.

Does anyone have any clue?

#castella #カステラ #japanesefood #nycfood #nycfoodie #japanesedesserts #baking #bakingtechnique