Japanse Castella Pound Cake & Chocolate Buttermilk Buttercream, #ChocolateParty

Castella honey cake has been a treasured gift in Japan since the 1600s. Portuguese sailors and merchants brought Paõ de Castela, Bread of Castile to Japan in the 1600s. Even when all foreigners were kicked out of the country by the Tokugawa shogunate for 200 years, the cake stayed. For several centuries the treat was reserved for rich folk – like the Emperor!


Today the royal dessert is readily available to all. Castella pound cake, in fact, is one of the most popular presents (or omiyage) one can bring to a home or company. But so are fancy chocolates. So, in honor of this month’s Chocolate Party celebrating the blissful blending of chocolate and buttermilk, I’ve baked Japanese castella pound cakes topped with the Ninja Baker’s Buttermilk Chocolate Buttercream.


Roxana of Roxana’s Home Baking is the creative force behind the party. If you wish to join the fun, click here. Or simply enjoy the scrumptious goods offered by the other party goers. (Scroll down for the list.)


For the Japanese Castella Pound Cake, I strongly recommend visiting Maki-san of Just Hungry. Her recipe and explanations of how best to whip the eggs and keep the moisture intact are invaluable. (My frosting how-to is slightly less complicated.) I made 3 mini loaves using Maki-san’s recipe and did not alter the baking time. My Castella cupcakes, however, were in the oven for 26 minutes.

The Ninja Baker’s Buttermilk Chocolate Buttercream


  • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • ½ cup Ghirardelli Sweet Ground Chocolate, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon meringue powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla powder
  • 1 cup organic all vegetable shortening
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate syrup
  • 5 ½ tablespoons buttermilk

Whisk powdered sugar, cocoa, meringue powder and vanilla powder together. Set aside.

In an electric mixer, combine shortening, syrup and buttermilk. When smooth, add the powdered sugar one big ladle at a time. When smooth, fill piping bags.
Pipe roses or stars directly onto cakes or cupcakes onto fondant blossoms.

Castella & Chocolate Buttercream was also shared at the Easter Party
hosted by Foodie Friends Friday




Wishing you royal treats.

The Ninja Baker

© ™ Watkinson 2012

The Ninja Baker has guest blogged and contributed recipes to numerous food sites. These additional recipes can be found here.