Tarta de Santiago is also known as the best Spanish almond cake, and is a delicious recipe from the northern region of Spain, Galicia. Santiago cake is known for its famous Saint James cross, baked to commemorate the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage in honour of St. James, the patron saint of Spain, but that is just the traditional look of it, the best part comes when you get to try it! Its soft texture and sweet taste make it one of those desserts every single Spaniard loves!Although Santiago cakes origin is not well known, it is said that during the Middle Ages, almonds were expensive and only a few could purchase them. Therefore, this cake was considered a luxury dessert.
The first reference for something similar to this Spanish almond cake is from 1577, when Pedro do Porto visited Santiago university and tried the “torta real,” which had similar ingredients to what we know now as Tarta de Santiago. The first recipes came from Bartolomé de Leybar in 1838.
All the best Jan