Spanish almond and orange cake

Based on the ‘Tarta di Santiago’, a traditional cake offered to pilgrims to welcome them to the Spanish town of Santiago di Compostella at the end of the arduous pilgrimage from France, this deliciously light cake has just three basic ingredients: almonds, sugar and eggs (yes, no flour, no butter!).

Why it’s good?

  • A natural energy food; moist, gluten-free and light on the stomach
  • Rich in cholesterol-reducing, heart healthy monounsaturated fats - Almonds contain a double-barreled protection against cardiovascular and diabetes. Low in GI, they help control blood sugar levels, and with high levels of vitamin E, they help lower cholesterol.
  • Packed with good quality carbohydrate and protein
  • Contains magnesium, important for energy production and bone health, potassium which helps control blood pressure, copper and iron, to maintain healthy red blood cell production and to help transport oxygen around the body


Nutrition per serving

Energy (kcal) 323 Protein (g) 9

Carbohydrate (g) 31 Fat (g) 18

Of which sugars (g) 30 Of which saturates (g) 2

Salt (g) 0.1 Fibre (g) 2


Ingredients to serve 6-8

4 large, free range eggs, separated

zest of 1 large orange

225g caster sugar

225g ground almonds

¬¨¬®≈í© tsp cinnamon

1 tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice

icing sugar to decorate


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.
  2. Lightly grease a 23cm springform cakes tin or flan dish with butter.
  3. Whisk the egg whites to soft peak stage with an electric whisk.
  4. Put the egg yolks, orange zest and sugar into a separate bowl and whisk until pale and creamy. Stir in the almonds, the cinnamon and the orange juice.
  5. Fold in the egg whites, a little at a time.
  6. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and cook in the oven for about 30–35 minutes, until golden. If you poke a skewer into the middle of the cake, it should come out clean. Cool in the tin, on a wire rack.
  7. When cool, decorate with icing sugar. Enjoy with a dollop of natural yoghurt or cr‚Äö√†√∂®me fraiche.


Recipe courtesy of Kate Percy’s ‘Go Faster Food’. For more delicious recipes to power your active lifestyle, subscribe to gofasterfood.com, get ‘Go Faster Food’ or ‘Go Faster Food for Kids’ on Amazon, or follow Kate on twitter @gofasterfood.