What makes Bizcocho Dominicano (Dominican Cake) so special? The secret is that this cake is incredibly delicate in texture and sinfully delicious.
No other recipe on our site is as popular or elicits as many questions as our Dominican cake. For those who have not tried it, it is hard to understand the fascination with this cake. What makes Dominican cake so special? Well, you won't know until you try it, but let me give you a spoiler: it may possibly be the best cake you'll ever try.
What makes it special
The most important features of the Bizcocho Dominicano (Dominican Cake) are that it is very 'airy' and moist. It contains a large amount of butter, about a third of it in fact, and a large volume of air, producing a cake that virtually dissolves in your mouth.
The icing, which we call "suspiro" is actually meringue, not to be confused with merengue which is something we Dominicans dance to, not something we eat. That is important to remember. The traditional filling is made from pineapple, which gives it the faintest of tartness. It all combines into a creamy, fluffy, otherworldly concoction without which no Dominican birthday, wedding or festivity is complete.
About our recipe
When I started this site it quickly became obvious that I needed to add the recipe for Dominican cake, which was not included in the original collection (I got, and still get, dozens of questions about it every week). Having never baked this cake before (it is rarely home-made in the Dominican Republic, we usually order it from a 'master baker'), I embarked on the quest for a recipe.
That was not easy, each baker has their own (minor 'tweaks' really) and most guard it fiercely.
Volumes can be written about Bizcocho Dominicano (Dominican Cake), and have in fact already been written (check the comments!). This cake seems to be the ultimate test for the expert Dominican cook, and however daunting, and confusing the instructions might look, we have really tried to add as much information as you could possibly need. Please read it.
Preparing the Bizcocho Dominicano (Dominican Cake) takes time. Lots of it. It is not something you can put together at the last minute. It takes planning and lots of preparation beforehand. It also requires that you follow the instructions very carefully. One little misstep could ruin your many hours of work. Please pay attention to the notes in the recipe.
Fillings for Dominican Cake:
- Pineapple Jam Filling - Recipe for the classic filling for this cake
- Guava Jam Filling- Another popular filling for the Dominican cake
- Pastry Cream Filling- A refined filling for your cake
- Dulce de Leche (Milk Fudge) Filling - It takes your cake to another level
Icing for Dominican Cake:
Bizcocho Dominicano cupcake version
- Bizcocho Dominicano Cupcakes - How to make Dominican cake into cupcakes
Bizcocho Dominicano Recipe (Dominican Cake)
To prepare the molds
- 2 tablespoon of butter at room temperature
- 2 tablespoon of flour
For the cake
- 1/2 lb (220 grams) of all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons of baking powder
- 1/2 lb (220 grams) of unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/2 lb (220 grams) of sugar
- 3 medium eggs [55 g/ea] at room temperature
- 1 pinch of grated lime peel
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- 1 cup of orange juice , divided into thirds
To prepare the molds
- Grease two 8" [20 cm] non-stick baking molds and sprinkle with the flour.
How to make Dominican Cake
- Preheat oven to 350 °F [175 °C].
- Mix the flour and baking powder and sift together. Divide into thirds and set aside.
- Beat together butter and sugar until it is light and fluffy and has a very light yellow color (about 4 mins).
- Add the eggs one by one and continue beating until each is well incorporated into the mixture before adding the next.
- Add the lime peel, and vanilla. Pour in a third of the juice, when it is well combined add a third of the flour. Repeat adding the flour and juice in thirds and keep whisking until all is well-mixed before adding the next third.
- As soon as you've stopped mixing the last batch of flour turn off the mixer, you should have obtained a fluffy batter with a smooth and even consistency.
- Pour in half the batter in each baking pan, making sure not to disturb the butter/flour cover.
- Bake until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean (about 30 mins). Cool down cakes to room temperature before removing from the pan.
- Cut the upper crust of the cakes, making them even. Pour the filling you chose (list above the recipe) then spread on the cut side of one of the cakes. Join both cakes filling-side in.
- To decorate the cake spread the meringue (list above the recipe) on top and around the cake, add decoration according to your taste and skills.
Tips and Notes
Important things to remember:Please read the whole recipe carefully before starting.
- Have all the ingredients at hand and ready.
- If you are preparing this cake for a special occasion I strongly suggest that you do not do it for the first time then. Bake a 'rehearsal' cake, this will give you time to adjust quantities, ask questions and improve your skills.
- Dominican cake must be consumed at room temperature, and best consumed the same day. Since it contains large amounts of fat it will harden in the fridge, detracting from what makes it different, that is, its lightness.
- You cannot prepare this cake without a mixer. You will need, at the very least, a hand-held one, and only if your cake is very small. We strongly suggest that you use a stand mixer. Once you start mixing the cake it has to be nonstop until the batter is finished. You will need your hands for other tasks, so if you are going to use a hand mixer please procure assistance. The recipe in our site can be prepared with a regular stand mixer; if you are preparing a bigger cake you will need a bigger, more powerful mixer. If your mixer is not able to move the volume of batter adequately your cake will fail to rise.
- You will need a scale to follow this recipe. I strongly discourage from converting weight to volumes for this cake. The reasons for this are a bit long to explain but do trust me on this. Borrow a kitchen scale for the day or buy a cheap one. Should you still wish to convert these weights, you can use this guide. Please do so yourself, and at your own risk.
- If you are not an expert at decorating with royal icing, you can either search online for tips and tricks or buy one of the myriads of books available on the subject. Cake decoration is out of the scope of our site. Mastering cake decoration is a long process, but with a bit of help you can produce some very nice results.