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Ensaimada de Mallorca
Friday, May 24, 2024 @ 7:32 PM

For those yet unacquainted with the sensory pleasure that is the Ensaimada de Mallorca, you're in for a treat that goes beyond the ordinary. This traditional recipe from the Balearic gastronomy, famed not just for its sobrasada but for this exquisite pastry too, is poised to take your taste buds on a journey. For the uninitiated, the ensaimada is an emblematic pastry from Mallorca, an island known for its culinary riches. The name 'ensaimada' itself hints at its indulgence, deriving from "saïm" meaning lard, a key ingredient that promises a taste of extravagance in each spiral.

 

 

Committing time to its preparation, especially the necessary proofing period, guarantees a confection that's as rewarding to make as it is to savour. For those embarking on this culinary venture, the advice is to let the dough proof overnight and bake it in the morning, making for a breakfast so delightful, it'll become an unforgettable part of your repertoire.

Ingredients

The journey begins with gathering your ingredients, a crucial step to ensure the ensaimada's authentic taste and texture:

  • Strong white bread flour: 400 g

  • Fresh yeast: 15 g

  • A medium egg

  • Water: 150 g

  • Sugar: 120 g

  • A pinch of salt

  • Lard for greasing

  • Icing sugar for dusting

Method: Crafting Your Ensaimada

The Preparatory Phase

  1. Begin by slightly warming the water—this should not be too hot, just pleasantly warm to the touch. This is crucial for dissolving the yeast. In a bowl, dissolve the yeast in the water, ensuring it's fully integrated.

  2. Take a large mixing bowl and place the flour within. To this, add the yeast mixture, the beaten egg, sugar, and a pinch of salt. This marks the beginning of your dough's journey.

  3. Dedicate about fifteen minutes to kneading. This process isn't just about mixing; it's about infusing the dough with elasticity and smoothness. Continue until you achieve a silky-smooth texture.

  4. Shape the dough into a ball and transfer it to a bowl lightly greased with oil. Now, it's time for the dough to rest and double in volume. This takes a minimum of an hour but is vital for the texture.

The Shaping

  1. Once proofed and airy, punch down the dough to release excess air, then divide it into six equal parts. It's from these parts that each unique ensaimada will begin to take shape.

  2. Roll out each portion with a rolling pin extensively. The aim is to get them as thin as possible without tearing. This is when you generously coat each rolled-out dough with lard, laying the foundation for its unique flavour.

  3. Carefully roll each sheet into a tight log. Allow it to rest; this relaxes the gluten, making it easier to shape. Stretch each log gently, then coil it into a spiral on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, ensuring there's space between the spirals to allow for expansion.

The Second Proof: An Overnight Affair

  1. Place the trays in an oven with a cup of water (the oven should be off) and leave them to proof overnight or for about ten hours. This slow fermentation is the secret behind the ensaimada's texture and depth of flavour.

  2. Preheat your oven to 200°C, and bake the ensaimadas for 10-12 minutes, or until golden. When ready, let them cool before dusting generously with icing sugar.

 

 

Serving Your Ensaimada

The true joy of ensaimada lies in its versatility—the pleasure of consuming it in its pure, unadulterated form or delighting in variants filled with 'cabello de ángel' (angel hair, a sweet pumpkin jam) before rolling, offering another layer of taste. Pairing it with a thick Spanish hot chocolate elevates the experience, creating a combination that's hard to surpass.

In conclusion, the Ensaimada de Mallorca is not just a recipe; it's a testament to the rich culinary tradition of the Balearic Islands, a celebration of simple ingredients transformed into an extraordinary delight. Whether for a special breakfast, an afternoon snack, or to celebrate a significant occasion, the ensaimada promises a moment of joy in every spiral. Its preparation, a process that involves patience and care, not only brings the flavours of Mallorca to your table but also the island's tradition of taking time to create something truly wonderful. So, why wait? Embark on this culinary adventure and let the ensaimada be a delicious testament to your baking prowess!



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1 Comments


Jo said:
Saturday, May 25, 2024 @ 12:11 PM

Love them, split & put honey or jam in them.

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