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Will a Touchinho do Ceu (Portuguese almond cake) be "fresh" if eaten a day after baking?

I am going to make a surprise cake for my Portuguese girlfriend's birthday, but will be busy with her during the entire day, and wanted to have the cake already done to give to her in the evening. Can I make it the night before and store it/reheat it without losing quality? Or is it a cake that seriously needs to be eaten fresh out of the oven?

asked by Max 3 months ago
5 answers 226 views
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added 3 months ago

I haven't made the dish, but since no one is responding, I did my best to research it. All of the recipes I saw emphasized that you should eat it at room temperature because it's so sweet, and heat will amplify that sweetness too much. Given the moist, dense nature of the cake, I think it would be just as good on the second day. I've made similarly textured cakes and found that they're good for about four days or so before their quality changes (and even then, they were still very tasty). I hope you're able to make it for her!

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added 3 months ago

I have friends in Northern Portugal where this is from - according to one of them actually it is extremely common to bake this in advance because the flavors get a chance to meld and the texture gets a chance to come together. However, I would putting it in the refrigerator at all costs. I would just put it in a box or wrap it in foil and keep it in a safe place. Also, a lot of nortenhos will say that it's not toucinho-do-céu unless there's a bit of pork lard in the mix - of course if vegetarians or kosher ppl around this can be omitted/replaced without much of a difference, but Portuguese familiar with the dessert might notice its absence.

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added 3 months ago

The name actually translates to "Heavenly Lard" (or heavenly bacon), so it would seem like it really should have some.

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added 3 months ago

That sentence should read "I would AVOID putting it in the refrigerator at all costs. " Oops.

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added 3 months ago

Also, just for fun, one might contrast this dessert to the equally famous (and really sweet) in Portugal dessert called sericaia. Sericaia is a kind of baked egg custard very traditional and popular in southern Portugal, especially the Alentejo region. With this dessert, you CANNOT save it for later, it has to be eaten basically as soon as possible after baking.

These desserts, along with the infamous bolo de bolacha, are considered the sweetest of the sweet in Portuguese cuisine.