The Portuguese who lived in Nagasaki about 400 years ago made a honey cake very similar to this one. The Japanese were quite taken with it and developed their own version of the cake, without any butter. It has become a Japanese classic, taught in cooking classes devoted to traditional Japanese sweets, and is served with native green teas as well as with “foreign” black teas or coffee.
The generous amount of honey makes a moist cake with a rich, dark surface on both top and bottom, while the concentration of egg yolks makes the cake a deep yellow color.
I’ve included an optional fresh ginger icing for the cake, which I think transforms this classic into a tantalizing new dessert.
Beat the eggs and yolks with an electric mixer on medium speed until thick and creamy. Gradually add the sugar, beating all the while. Continue to beat at medium speed until the mixture is very thick, pale, and at least triple the volume of the original beaten eggs. Dribble the honey into the egg and sugar mixture, beating all the while.
Add the flour in two or three batches, folding to incorporate it into the batter.
Use a nonstick-surface
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and gently tap on a flat surface to ensure removal of large air bubbles.
Allow the cake to cool completely in the pan before removing it to a serving platter. Cut the cake into thirds, then across into
© 1985 Elizabeth Andoh. All rights reserved.