ENSA¤MADA

TheáEnsa´madaáis a highly traditional example of Mallorcan confectionary, an icon for Mallorcan gastronomy that has been made and eaten on the island over a consistently long period of time. Defined byáJosep PlÓáas theá"lightest, airiest and most delicate thing in this country's confectionary"á.á

Its origins are unknown. Some says it has an Arabic ascendant and some links it to the Mallorcan Jews. But they all agree that it is one of the tastiest and most unique pastries in the world and that it has been made and eaten on the island over a consistently long period of time (the first written references date back to the 17th century).á

They are made of sugared dough that has been fermented and baked, with bread flour, water, sugar, eggs, starter dough and pig's lard as its ingredients. The dough is shaped, fermented, baked and finally sprinkled over with icing sugar. This is the traditional type. In the last years bakers have managed to fill them withácabell d'Óngelá(pumpkin jam), cream, almond, chocolate, fruit... which make them even more delicious.á

There are many sizes and weighs. The biggest ones are usually eaten at big family gatherings as a dessert.á

You'll find Ensa´madas in almost every bar and cafeteria in Alc˙dia. Many bakers produce them in their own ovens. If you want a big one, they make them especially for you but you've got to order them a day in advance.á

The specific use of the name ensaimada de Mallorca was protected in 1996 and, in April 2003, the Government of the Balearic Islands approved the current regulation that recognizes it as a protected geographical indication.