Mini Tarta de Santiago in Shell

The Tarta de Santiago is a popular Spanish dessert, common along the Camino route. Named in honor of the apostle, St. James, the patron saint of Spain, this cake is made with ingredients typical in many Iberian desserts such as egg, lemon and almonds. The traditional Tarta de Santiago in a larger single cake and was highlighted in a previous post. I came across this fun idea to make mini tartas using scallop shells as the baking pan. Since the scallop shell is a symbol of St. James this was perfect for the feast day, July 25.

Tarta de Santiago
5 eggs
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups almond flour
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
zest of 1/2 lemon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In mixing bowl beat eggs and then sugar and almond extract.  Add almond flour, cinnamon, and lemon zest. Mix until all dry ingredients are moist. Spoon batter into buttered scallop shells. The shells are available at many craft stores and kitchen stores, as well as online outlets like AmazonBatter makes approximately 8 mini cakes. For stability and ease of getting them in and out of oven, place filled shells on baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes until browned and cooked through. Test with toothpick.

Let cakes cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar using a sifter to distribute. A paper template of the Santiago cross can be placed on the shell before sprinkling then removed. This leaves a cross outline on the tarta. Cross template with instructions are linked here.

St. James, Pray for us!

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