Sunday, February 15, 2015

Spiced Bolo de Fubá

   I think there must be as many recipes and variations for this  popular Brazilian corn flour cake as there are for chocolate cake.  A staple at hotel breakfast buffets, this Brazilian cousin of our corn bread varies in taste and texture from recipe to recipe.  One of the most interesting I had was at a cafe in the park across the street from my hotel in Manaus, this particular Bolo de Fubá had corn incorporated in the batter.  Some others include cheese and maybe more like a cross between a custard and a cake.  These latter ones are known as Bolo de Fubá Cremoso and are very different in texture than the one pictured on the left which, nonetheless, departs from most straight forward versions which call for the basic ingredients of flours, oils, eggs and sugar.
   A little note about ingredients:  All the ingredients except the corn flour can be found in the regular sections of the supermarket.  For the corn flour, you will have to look in the Latin section or visit a local Latino market.  Pick up the one called masa harina (Quaker makes a version of this), a finely milled corn flour used for making tortillas.  Regular corn meal is too coarse and you will not get the desired texture.

Spiced Bolo de Fubá

1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
4 eggs, separated
1 1/2 cups corn flour such as masa harina
1 cup unbleached flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons ginger
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 cup milk

Preheat oven to 350° F.
Butter and flour a tube pan and set aside.
Sift together the two flours, baking powder and spices and reserve.
Beat sugar and butter until fluffy.  Add egg yolks one at a time and beat until fully incorporated scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed.
In a clean bowl (and using clean beaters) beat egg whites until they form soft peaks,
Add half the flour mixture to the sugar and butter mixture and mix well scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Add all the milk and thoroughly mix
Add the rest of the flour and combine.
Fold in 1/3 of the beaten egg whites until no white spots show in the batter.  Fold in the remaining 2/3 of the beat egg whites and fold in taking care not to let them deflate much.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, leveling off with a spatula and bake for 45 to 55 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
Let cool before removing from pan.
As with many kinds of corn meal products, this dries out sooner than traditional cakes.


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