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Bizcochos Borrachos

Origin: Castilla la Mancha and Castilla y León

Bizcocho Borracho

Bizcochos Borrachos, which are also sometimes known as just Borrachos, are a type of Spanish sponge cake which is then topped with a tasty syrup which contains a liquor, normally brandy or rum, as well as sugar, lemon and cinnamon. This alcohol infused sauce therefore gives these cakes their name as well, as those of you who learn Spanish in Spain or abroad will know, 'borracho' means drunk or drunken in Spanish.

Bizcochos Borrachos are a typical dessert in Spanish gastronomy and is typically found in the provinces of Cuenca, and Guadalajara in Castilla La Mancha as well as in the province of Zamora in Castilla y León. Depending on where you go when you visit Spain, you will find these cakes with or without a light dusting of ground cinnamon.

The type of alcoholic beverage used to make these Spanish sponge cakes 'drunk' also varies from place to place with different types of liquor being used. The most common are rum and brandy or sometimes the famous sherry from Jerez. However in some places these bizcochos are made using sweet white wines or dessert wines which give the cakes a slightly different flavour. Depending on how you like your sponge cakes, you can also let the syrup soak into the cake for an hour or so but this will make the cake heavier but taste delicious.

Bizcochos vary in size and the smallest ones are often presented in little paper cases. These Spanish cakes make a perfect addition to Spanish morning coffees or hot chocolate and go exceptionally well with afternoon tea. Bizcochos Borrachos even work as a light pudding after dinner, especially if made larger in size.

These Spanish drunken sponge cakes have also become an important part of the culture and customs of the regions where they are popular. For example, during the carnivals in Guadalajara, which last an entire week, the first things that happen are the children's parades wearing their carnival masks who then go and enjoy some of the cakes in the city squares and plazas.

Bizcochos Borrachos | Drunken Sponge Cakes


Bizcocho Borracho
  • For cake:
  • 4 eggs
  • ½ cup granulate sugar
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon for decoration
  • For sauce:
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 8 fl. oz. water
  • 1½ tbsps honey
  • 1½ oz. Brandy or Rum
  • 1 Cinnamon stick
  • Peel of ½ a lemon
  • Makes 9 small servings or 1 large 20 centimetre cake


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Grease a 20 centimetre square cake tin with vegetable oil or butter and then flour it.
  • Separate the egg yolks and the egg whites. Beat the egg yolks in a bowl with the sugar until you get a creamy mixture.
  • In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until they are stiff and hold their shape. Fold the egg yolk and sugar mixture into the egg whites carefully using a spatula.
  • Bizcocho Borracho
  • Fold in both the baking powder and the flour gradually, bit by bit and make sure it is mixed well.
  • Pour the batter mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until it turns golden in colour. You can check whether the cake is done by inserting a tooth pick into the centre of the cake. If the pick is clean when it is pulled out, the cake is done.
  • While the cake is baking, you can make the syrup sauce. Put water, sugar, cinnamon, honey and lemon peel into a small sauce pan. Bring this mixture to the boil, stirring occasionally, and allow to boil for about a minute. Remove the pan from the heat and the brandy or rum. Then allow the syrup to cool down.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool. Once it has cooled sufficiently, cut the cake into 9 pieces and place them on a serving dish. Drizzle each piece of cake with the brandy syrup sauce and then decorate them by dusting the tops with ground cinnamon.
  • Serve and enjoy with tea or coffee!