The secret to achieving this cake’s moist, dense-but-not-too-dense texture is to poke it all over with a knife while it’s still warm, before dousing it with a rich milk mixture that will soak into the cake’s interior.
- 2 tsp. butter
- 1 tbsp. plus 2 cups flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. fine salt
- 6 eggs, at room temperature, separated
- 1 1⁄4 cups sugar
- 1⁄2 cup whole milk
- 1 1⁄2 tbsp. dark rum
- 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 (14-oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 (12-oz.) can evaporated milk
- 1 (16-oz.) jar dulce de leche (milk caramel)
- Heat the oven to 350°. Grease a 9″ × 13″ baking pan with the butter and dust with 1 tbsp. of the flour. Invert the dish, tap out the excess flour, and set aside.
- Sift the remaining flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl and set aside. Put the egg whites into a large bowl and beat with a hand-held electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form, about 2 minutes. While the mixer is still running, add the sugar in a gradual stream and continue beating again to soft peaks. Add the egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition. Alternately add the reserved flour mixture and the whole milk in 3 parts, beating until smooth after each addition. Add the rum and vanilla and beat again briefly until smooth.
- Pour batter into reserved baking pan and bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Set the cake aside and let cool slightly for 30 minutes.
- Whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, and heavy cream in a bowl. Using a knife, poke the cake with holes all over, penetrating to the bottom of the pan. Pour the milk mixture over the warm cake and set aside to let cool completely.
- Cover the cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled and liquid is absorbed, at least 4 hours. Spread the dulce de leche across the top of the cake and serve.