Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Angel Food Cake

It turns out that angel food cake just doesn't come out of a cake mix box! Who knew?!

Surprisingly enough, angel food cake is one of my absolute favorite cakes, despite it's massive lack of chocolate. A simple cake, it takes precise care to develop the correct volume, texture and color. To me, it is considered complete with the addition of fruit, usually strawberries, and whipped cream. I wish I had taken a picture of the angel food cake my mom had made for my birthday- it was pretty, AND delicious!

Angel Food Cake
makes 1 tube cake, 8 inches

  • 10 oz sugar
  • 3.5 grams cream of tartar
  • 3.875 oz cake flour or all purpose flour
  • 0.375 tsp salt
  • 10 oz egg whites
  • 1/4 tbsp vanilla extra
Angel Food Batter in 8inch tube pan
  1. Sprinkle the insides of the tube pans lightly with water.
  2. Combine half of the sugar with the cream of tartar. Sift together the remaining half sugar with the flour and salt.
  3. Whip the egg whites and vanilla to soft peaks on medium with the whip attachment.
    • This will seem very foamy at first. Wish I had taken a picture! It will grow in volume.
  4. Gradually add the sugar and cream of tartar mixture to the egg whites, whipping on high speed to maximum volume.
  5. Gently fold the sifted sugar and flour mixture into the egg whites until just incorporated.
    • Work quickly. The more time this step takes, the less volume your baked cake will have- time allows the batter to deflate.
  6. Pour batter into prepared tube pan.  
    • The picture to the left shows the tube pans we used in class. The side of the pan is a separate piece from the bottom, which consists of the bottom and tube portion in the middle.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees F until cake springs back when lightly touched, about 35 minutes.
  8. Invert tube pan onto a funnel or long-necked bottle on a rack to cool. Alternatively, for each cake, invert a small ramekin on top of a rack and prop the cake pan upside down and at an angle on the ramekin. Let the cakes cool completely upside down.
    • Cooling upside down helps the cake come out of the tube pan more easily after cooling. 
Angel food cake cooling. If you look carefully, you can see how the sides of the pan is separate from the bottom.
      9.  Carefully run a palette knife around the sides of each pan and around the center tube to   
           release the cake. Shake the pan gently to invert the cake onto the rack.
    • Here, I used an offset spatula, to careful loosen the sides and middle of pan. Once I did that, I popped the bottom from the sides, and the cake came right out.

 Looks like you just made yourself another delicious baked good! The best part about this cake is that it won't set you back in the calorie department. Which saves room for lots of whipped cream and strawberry toppings! Yum!



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