This was one of the highlights of our New Year’s party and I wanted it for my recipe book from the first taste. Why smart, you might ask? Well, because all the layers you see up there are the cake’s own making. The process might be a bit tricky, but it’s totally worth it, trust me. The recipe is adapted from the Romanian website bucataras.ro.
- 8 eggs, yolks separated from the whites
- 1 l milk
- 250g good quality butter (80% fat)
- 300g sugar
- 225g flour
- 3 tsp vanilla extract (or, better yet, a vanilla pod, you’ll be happy you did this switch)
- 2 tbsp water
- pinch of salt
- powder sugar to decorate (optional)
- Melt the butter and set aside to cool
- Mix together the yolks and the sugar, until you get a creamy mixture. Use a larger bowl for this, this is where all the ingredients will come to
- Add the sifted flower and the water and incorporate
- Add the vanilla extract, the melted butter (not hot) and the milk, warmed a bit in advance
- Set aside the mixture, while beating the egg whites until stiff, adding a pinch of salt
- Slowly incorporate the egg whites into the mixture using a large spoon, a whisk or the lowest speed on your mixer
- By now, you should have your oven preheated, on low heat. Grease a large cooking tray with oil and cover with a thin layer of flour
- Pour the batter in the tray and bake for 45-60 minutes, over low heat (gas 2), until the top is golden brown and the cake feels firm to touch
- Try not to open the oven frantically (like I did with the first batch), leave the cake set for at least half hour before checking on it
- Once out, let cool completely, preferably overnight (not something we were able to do, though… no biggie)
So this is how smart the cake is. From one batch of batter, it separates itself into two (or three) layers. I assume my third layer appeared because I had to bake this one in two batches (no tray big enough for this one, apparently) and the flour had time to separate while the first batch was in the oven. It’s just a theory, though.
The result came out very nice. But practice makes perfect and I will get perfect at this one. This is how tasty (and smart) it is.