(Not to be confused with the American Angel Food Cake)
The Angel Cake is a sponge cake originating in the UK. It is a layer cake. There are some health concerns with Angel cakes. They are high in sugar and may lead to diabetes or obesity. Common in lunchboxes, they are usually made by Mr Kipling. It is a very famous cake is some countries and is considerd a delicacy. This cake is yummy just like all other cakes. They are usually eaten at Christmas as angels are associated with this holiday.
Angel Food Cake Recipe:
- 1 1/4 cups (125 grams) sifted cake flour
- 1 1/2 cups (300 grams) granulated white sugar
- 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) egg whites, at room temperature (from about 12 large eggs)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
Angel Food Cake:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Have ready a 10 inch (25 cm) two piece angel food cake (tube) pan.
In a large bowl sift together 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar and the sifted cake flour.
In your electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar, lemon juice, and salt and continue to beat until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the remaining 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar, a tablespoon at a time, until glossy stiff peaks form. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract and almond extract.
Sift the flour mixture over the egg whites (about one quarter of the flour mixture at a time) and gently but quickly fold (do not stir) the flour into the egg whites. You can use a large wire whisk or a large rubber spatula. (It is important not to over fold the batter or it will deflate.)
Pour the batter into the pan and run a metal spatula or knife through the batter to get rid of any air pockets. Smooth the top and bake in the preheated oven for about 40 - 45 minutes. The cake is done when a wooden skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean and the cake springs back when gently pressed. The top of the cake will have cracks. Do not over bake.
Immediately upon removing from the oven invert the pan. Suspend the pan by placing the inner tube on the top of a wine bottle or flat topped glass. Allow the cake to cool for about 1 1/2 hours.
When completely cool, run a metal spatula or knife around the sides of the pan to loosen the cake and then remove the cake from the pan. Next, run a metal spatula or knife along the bottom and center core of the pan and remove. Place on your serving plate. It is best to cut this cake with a serrated knife using a back-and-forth sawing motion. Try not to press down on the cake when cutting as this will squash its soft and spongy texture.
This cake is best served on the day it is made but it will keep covered for a few days at room temperature or for several days in the refrigerator. It is great toasted.
This cake can be eaten alone with just a dusting of confectioners' (powdered or icing) sugar. Is also wonderful with fresh berries and softly whipped cream. Another idea is to serve with ice cream, strawberry or raspberry puree, or chocolate sauce.