A Mexican Inspired Pineapple Cake with Mescal
This cake is rich and dense with almond meal and unsweetened coconut. A spirited syrup featuring aged mescal is drizzled on top until the cakes are “drunk”, hence the name. The pineapple comes in as decoration and adds sweetness, fruitiness and texture. This recipe is from Margarita Carrillo Arronte’s new book, Mexico, as is the Pastel Tres Leches cake.
Adapted from Mexico: The Cookbookby Margarita Carrillo Arronte. Publisher by Phaidon 2014. Photographs by Fiamma Piacentini.
Region: Mexico City, Puebla
Preparation time: 1 hour
Cooking time: 40 minutes
- ¾ cup (2oz/50g) all-purpose (plain) flour
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- 5½ tablespoons (2¾ oz/70g) butter, diced
- 1 cup (4oz/120g) confectioners’ (icing) sugar
- 3 eggs
- 4 tablespoons almond meal
- 1 cup (3oz/80g) finely grated unsweetened coconut
- ½ cup (3½ oz/100g) sugar
- ½ cup (3½ fl oz/100ml) aged mezcal
- 4 tablespoons (2oz/50g) butter
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 1 small ripe pineapple, peeled, cored, and sliced
- ½ cup (3½ fl oz/100ml) heavy (double) cream
- 4 tablespoons confectioners’ (icing) sugar
- 8 raspberries, blackberries, or strawberries
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C/Gas Mark 4). Line an 8½-inch (22-cm) cake pan or 8 individual cake pans with parchment paper.
- Sift together the flour and baking powder into a bowl.
- Beat together the butter and confectioners’ (icing) sugar in another bowl until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the ground almonds and grated coconut and beat well. Add the flour mixture in batches and beat until all the ingredients have been incorporated.
- Spoon the batter into the pan(s) and bake for about 30 minutes for the large one (or 20 minutes for the individual cake pans), or until golden brown and a wooden toothpick (cocktail stick) inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Meanwhile, make the syrup. Combine the sugar and ½ cup (4 fl oz/120ml) water in a saucepan, heat gently, and stir until the sugar has dissolved completely. Bring to a boil, without stirring, and boil for 2 minutes or until clear. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool.
- Remove the cake pan(s) from the oven, turn out the cake(s), and let cool. Combine ½ cup (3½ fl oz/100ml) of the cooled syrup with the mescal and drizzle over the cake(s) to make them borracho (drunk).
- For the decoration, combine the butter and sugar in a saucepan and cook over medium heat, covered, until caramel colored. Add the pineapple slices and cook a few minutes on each side to caramelize. Remove the pan from the heat. Cover and set aside.
- Beat the cream with the confectioners’ sugar in a bowl until it forms soft peaks. To serve, top the cake(s) with pineapple slices and spoon over the cream. Decorate with berries of choice.