Pan Di Spagna (Italian Sponge Cake )

"Pan di Spagna (sponge cake) is used as a base for many Italian desserts and cakes. It is a somewhat dry cake, which is usually sprinkled/brushed with a rum or liqueur flavored syrup before the addition of a cream filling. Three 8 or 9inch round or square cake pans may be used instead of the sizes specified."
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Ready In:
1 18inch square layer


  • 5 egg yolks
  • 5 egg whites
  • 1 12 cups sugar
  • 1 14 cups pastry flour, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 12 teaspoon grated fresh lemon rind (optional)


  • Place egg yolks and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat until lemon colored.
  • Add vanilla and lemon rind (if using it).
  • Beat egg whites until stiff but not dry and then fold into the egg yolk mixture.
  • Sift the flour in a separate bowl and slowly incorporate it into the egg mixture with a mixing spoon.
  • Butter and flour a 18inch square (or a 9 x 13 x 3, or a 11 x 17 x 2inch half-sheet) cake pan**.
  • Pour cake batter into prepared pan and bake at 375°F for 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Remove cake from oven and turn out (of pan) onto a cake rack to cool.
  • When completely cool, cake may be sliced horizontally to form 2 or 3 thin layers.
  • Cake can be tightly wrapped and frozen (up to 3 weeks) for future use.
  • **Please check your oven size, to make sure pan will fit properly.

Questions & Replies

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  1. chef Dave1
    I just wanted to say that the chef is right the egg and sugar gets mixed until a leman colored then the flour little at a time folding the eggg whites so the cake dose not turn to rubber
  2. Horse n Hound Gal
    I agree, it was hard to add the egg whites after making the egg yolk mixture more like a paste! I also added a splash of lemon juice and that gave it a tangy, yummy flavor!
  3. lotusessence
    I don't believe is OK to add the flour in egg yolks and sugar mixture because that become very hard composition and is dificult to incorporate the egg white because will lose the "fluffy". The best way is to add first the beated egg whites and after that little at a time the flour. I made a lot of cakes in my life and this is the best way for "Pan di Spagna" to make a good cake.


I'm married (46 years to the same lucky guy) and have 2 kids, a daughter 41, a son 36, and 2 beautiful grand daughters (8 yrs and 6 yrs). I have always enjoyed cooking and baking, especially breads :) One of my favorite quotes:?? Computers are like air conditioners; they stop working when you open Windows.
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