Glenn Lindgren: Capuchinos are those little yellow cone-shaped cakes you see in just about every Cuban bakery. These delicious dessert cakes supposedly got their name because the shape looks a lot like the headgear (a hood really) worn by the Capuchin monks. Now what these Roman monks were doing in Havana, we'll never know!
Jorge Castillo: We also get the name "cappuccino" from these guys who evidently enjoyed swilling coffee AND eating delicious Cuban pastry! In any case, the bakery capuchinos are made in paper cones using baker's parchment and are filled from a large pastry bag.
Raúl Musibay: You need a special rack to hold the cones, something that is hard to find commercially. Most bakeries make their own.
Glenn Lindgren: We made our own rack using two old jelly roll pans. We drilled holes in one pan and used the other pan for a base. You fill the base with a little water to create a baño de Maria or water bath.
Jorge Castillo: You also need to get bakers parchment and cut it in strips so that when you roll the paper into a cone you end up with the right size – about 2 1/2 inches long.
Raúl Musibay: You need to experiment with the right width and length and your rolling technique to get it right.
Glenn Lindgren: Most bakers aren't very fond of these by the way – too labor intensive.
Jorge Castillo: We have tried this recipe a couple of times, but we have to agree with the bakers – making and filling all those cones is a lot of work!
The little yellow cone-shaped cakes you see in just about every Cuban bakery.
Cake:1 whole egg
Syrup1 cup sugar
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
Roll the parchment paper into cones and place one in each hole in your capuchinos rack. A light spray of PAM on the inside of each cone will help remove the paper when the capuchinos are cool.
Beat the whole egg and the egg yolks until they get frothy – about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the sugar, vanilla, and salt and continue beating for another five minutes – the mixture will get very thick and increase in volume. Gradually add the flour. Gradually add the cornstarch, a little at a time, until you have a very thick, yellow mixture. TIP: Sift the cornstarch into the mixture with a small metal sieve.
Place the batter in a large pastry bag with a medium tip. Use the bag to carefully fill the cones about two-thirds full.
Place the rack of capuchinos over a shallow pan of water on the center rack of your oven.
Bake the capuchinos for approximately 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown on top.
To make the syrup:
Place the sugar, water, cinnamon stick, lemon peel, orange peel, and annisette in a large saucepan. Bring to a rolling boil and let it cook for about three to five minutes, until the syrup thickens. Remove from heat. Be sure to remove and discard the cinnamon stick and citrus peels!
Let the capuchinos cool slightly, but try to remove the parchment paper while they are still quite warm. Place the capuchinos in a shallow pan and drown them in the very warm syrup. Let them soak at room temperature for about 30 minutes – until they absorb a lot of syrup. Place them in a sealed conatiner with some additional syrup in the bottom. Refrigerate overnight and serve them the next day.
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