Tarta de Santiago - Spanish Almond Cake
I can't believe it's December and time to share delicious and warming spice recipes and treats. And this warming Spanish cake fits that bill perfectly. The Torta de Santiago gets it's name from the Camino de Santiago, or the Way of St. James, and 300+ mile Pilgrimage through Spain ending at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela where the it is believed that St. James, known as Santiago, is buried. The top of the cake is typically adorned with the espada, a combination of cross and sword. Cut your cross out of paper and lay it on top of the cake before dusting heavily with powdered sugar. Or not, it won't look the same but it will be just as tasty.
This tasty cake has got cinnamon, orange and lemon zest, and my own, non-authentic addition, of mahlab. The Mahlab is a middle eastern spice and if you have been around here long you know I add it to most everything. You can find it in most Middle Eastern markets or on Amazon. The combination of fruit and spices is almost reminiscent of fruit cake but in a way that is fresh and not stodgy.