Castella | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

Castella

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: moist cake, sponge cake
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 2 Castella Cakes
Treat yourself with this super moist Japanese sponge cake with a hint of sweetness from honey! Made with only 4 ingredients, Japanese Castella Cake is a very popular confectionary in Japan. Try this delicious cake for your weekend baking project. It makes the perfect holiday or hostess gift too.
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Ingredients

  • 6 large eggs (at room temperature - very important!)
  • 200 g sugar (1 cup)
  • 200 g bread flour (1 ½ cup + 2 Tbsp) (See Notes)
  • 80 ml honey (⅓ cup)
  • Tbsp water (warm)

Honey Mixture for Brushing Castella

  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • ½ Tbsp water (warm)

Instructions

  1. Gather all the ingredients.

    Castella Ingredients
  2. Cut parchment paper to fit the baking pans (See the video for this process).
    Castella 1
  3. Preheat oven to 320F (160C).
  4. Sift the bread flour with the sifter or a fine-meshed strainer twice. Holding the handle with one hand and tapping the strainer gently with the other, the flour will gradually sift through the strainer.
    Castella 2
  5. Add 2½ Tbsp warm water to honey and whisk well.
    Castella 3
  6. Fit the mixer with the whisk attachment. Crack eggs into the bowl and vigorously whisk until combined.
    Castella 4
  7. Add the sugar.
    Castella 5
  8. Beat the eggs and sugar on high speed (Speed 10) for 5 minutes (See Notes).  The volume of the beaten eggs will increase about 4 times. The texture will be thick and the color will be pale yellow. When you stop the mixer and lift the whisk attachment, the mixture should fall in ribbons.
    Castella 6
  9. Add the honey mixture into the egg mixture and whisk on low speed (Speed 2) until combined, about 30 seconds.
    Castella 7
  10. Add the bread flour at three separate times: add 1/3 of the bread flour and whisk on low speed (Speed 2) for 15 seconds, then add more flour and whisk for 15 seconds. Add the last remaining portion and whisk until just combined for about 1 minute. Do not overmix.
    Castella 8
  11. Spray the loaf pans with oil and spread out evenly with pastry brush.
    Castella 9
  12. Put the parchment paper in the pans and make sure the paper sticks to the pans. If not, add oil and spread out evenly with a brush.
    Castella 10
  13. Pour the batter into the pans (about 80% full).
    Castella 11
  14. Using a skewer, draw a zigzag line to remove the air bubbles in the batter.
    Castella 12
  15. Level batter in each pan by holding pan 2-inches above counter dropping it flat onto counter. Do this several times to release air bubbles.
    Castella 13
  16. Bake at 320F (160C) on middle rack of oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean (See Notes). I bake for 35 minutes and keep my oven door ajar for a few minutes then I take out the cake. When done, cake sides will pull away from pan slightly; top will be flat and feel spongy when pressed with finger.
    Castella 14
  17. Mix 1 Tbsp honey and ½ Tbsp warm water in a bowl and apply the honey mixture on top of the cake with a pastry brush.
    Castella 15
  18. Place a sheet of plastic wrap on the counter top. Take out the cake from the pan to the plastic wrap, top facing down. Gently peel off parchment paper.
    Castella 16
  19. Immediately wrap the cake with plastic wrap to keep the moisture and while it's hot store in the refrigerator overnight (at least 12 hours), keeping the top side facing down. This will help the cake have more fine and moist texture.
    Castella 17
  20. To serve, slice off the sides of the cake with a sharp bread knife and cut into 3/4 to 1 inch thick slices (you get 7-8 slices total). It's better if you bring the cake to room temperature before serving. To save for later, wrap individual pieces with plastic wrap.  You can store at room temperature for up to 3-4 days, 5-7 days in refrigerator, and 1 month in freezer.

    Castella 18

Recipe Notes

Bread Flour: Castella has a little elastic bouncy texture from bread flour and all-purpose flour cannot achieve this texture.

 

Beating Eggs: If you beat the eggs with a handheld mixer, it will take more than 5 minutes. Also, if you have a stand mixer Water Jacket (hot water bath), use it for 1 minute while you whisk eggs and sugar. It helps with making a smooth texture for sponge cake. If you use handheld mixer, put the mixing bowl over hot water and whisk for 1 minute.

Baking Time: For our oven, the cake comes out perfectly after 35 minutes. However, each oven works differently and you will need to experiment with your own oven and adjust accordingly. It took me a few attempts to learn the right baking time and temperature.

 

Equipment you will need:

 

Recipe by Namiko Chen of Just One Cookbook. All images and content on this site are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission. If you’d like to share this recipe on your site, please re-write the recipe in your own words and link to this post as the original source. Thank you.