Magdalenas are a type of sponge cake from Spain. They contain the usual cake ingredients such as flour, eggs, sugar and baking powder but what makes them unique is the addition of olive oil combined with lemon flavor. The wet ingredients and dry ingredients are sorted separately then combined. The batter is chilled in the fridge before it is baked until golden.
Usually baked in small cake tins, Magdalenas are referred to as cupcakes or muffins. Variations include adding orange zest for a different citrus note. Any olive oil can be used, though a mild olive oil is preferred. Arbequina is a popular choice due to its fruitiness.
Chilling batter is not a usual step for making cakes. Magdalena batter is chilled because it help the cake rise, giving them their puffy tops.
Magdalenas are served for breakfast with tea or café con leche which is coffee with milk. It is also served as a merienda, an afternoon snack, again with a warm beverage.
Origin & Cultural Significance
Magdalenas originated in Spain and is believed to be inspired by the French Madelaines because their original appearance was shell shaped. Some think they are named after a young girl, Magdelana who would hand them out to pilgrims. Others believe them to be first made at a convent and named after Saint Mary Magdelene.
- Eggs - 3
- Sugar - ½ cup
- All-purpose flour - 1 ½ cups
- Baking powder - 2 tsp
- Salt - ½ tsp
- Extra virgin olive oil - ½ cup
- Whole milk - ¼ cup
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Sugar - to top the muffins
- Beat the eggs and sugar in a large bowl until the sugar dissolves completely.
- Sift the flour, salt and baking powder together in a separate bowl and then add to the egg and sugar mixture.
- Whisk until just incorporated.
- Add the olive oil, milk, and lemon zest and whisk until well combined.
- Cover the bowl and leave in the fridge for 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 480°F
- Line muffin or cupcake pans with muffin wrappers.
- Fill the muffin wrappers ¾ of the way, and sprinkle a pinch of sugar on top of each muffin.
- As the muffins are placed into the oven, lower the heat to 400°F.
- Bake for 15 minutes on the middle rack. Don't open the oven until they're ready.
- Test with a toothpick in the middle to make sure they're cooked through.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 229Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 50mgSodium: 230mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 1gSugar: 12gProtein: 4g
Nutrition is provided and calculated by Nutritionix. It is for general information purposes and is only a rough estimation.