I am making a conscious effort to challenge myself with bakes that intimidate me so I can become better at baking. I have already tackled my weak area of biscuits and crackers, now I have decided to tackle Angel Food Cake. Angel Food Cake is a tricky cake to make as it contains no fat and it only gets its lift from the egg whites so it’s really important to whisk the egg whites properly and maintain the lift in them throughout the mixing process. However I had a trusty gadget on hand to help me we this and that was the wonderful KITCHEN AID :) I was staying at my mums house so I had the perfect excuse to make this cake and try out the kitchen aid.
I was originally put off making an Angel Food Cake as it uses so many egg whites and I kept thinking to myself what the hell am I going to do with all the egg yolks. So I found this recipe that manages to use up all the yolks. If you feel like a bit of a technical challenge this is definitely the cake to try. Good Luck :-)
MAKES: 1 Large Cake (Serves 12-14 people)
FOR THE CAKE:
- 125g Plain Flour
- 300g Caster Sugar
- 10 Large Egg Whites (don’t panic I know this is a lot and you are probably wondering what am I going to do with 10 Egg Yolks, well my fellow bakers we are going to use them in the lemon curd yes ALL 10 of them so this means nothing will go to waste).
- Zest of 2 large unwaxed lemons.
- 1 tbsp of Lemon juice.
- 1 tsp of cream of tartar
- 1/2 tsp of Salt
FOR THE LEMON CURD
- 10 Large Egg Yolks
- 325g Caster Sugar
- Zest of 2 large Lemons
- Juice of 4 large lemons – Approx 200ml-225ml (use juice from the 2 lemons zested for the cake)
- 175g of unsalted butter
FOR THE TOPPING
- 300ml whipping cream
- 4-5 tbsps of Lemon Curd
- 1/2 tsp of Vanilla Extract
1. Heat your oven to 170c. Place the oven shelf near the bottom of the oven.
2. Sift the flour and 100g of caster sugar in to a bowl, mix and set aside.
Put the egg whites into a very large bowl and whisk on high speed for 1 minute until frothy. TIP: When whisking egg whites it’s very important to not get any fat in to the whites or they won’t rise properly. I would suggest getting two bowls plus the bowl you are using to whisk the egg whites in. First crack the eggs one at a time over the first bowl, put the egg white in this bowl and the egg yolk in the other. Check the egg white has no yolk in it and pour it in to the whisking bowl. Then repeat with the rest of the eggs. Set the yolks to one side until needed for the lemon curd.
3. Add the lemon zest, juice, cream of tartar and salt, continue whisking for 3 minutes until soft peaks form when the whisk is lifted. Whisking on high speed add the remaining sugar (200g) a tablespoon at a time, then whisk until the whites form firm but not stiff peaks.
4. Sprinkle a third of the flour mixture over the egg whites and carefully fold in with a large metal spoon or plastic spatula so you don’t knock the air out. Repeat with the rest of the flour mixture in 2 batches folding in gently until everything is carefully combined.
5. Transfer the mixture to an ungreased angel food cake pan. I didn’t have one so I used a ridged bundt cake tin however I would not suggest using this as the ridges causes some of the mixture to stick to the pan. Then run a knife through the mixture in order to remove any large air pockets. Place in a heated oven for 45-50mins until a skewer inserted in to the cake comes out clean.
6. Remove from the oven straight away and immediately turn it upside down, if you don’t have an angel food cake tin (which has 3 legs attached) then use a jar to support the centre hole so that the surface of the cake is exposed to the air to cool. Leave the cake to cool for 1 hour, then run a palette knife around the inner and outer edges of the cake to loosen it from the pan.
7. Meanwhile make the lemon curd. Mix together the egg yolks, sugar, lemon zest and juice in a large pan. Cook gently over a low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, make sure to stir thoroughly so the eggs don’t scramble. Cook until the mixture starts to thicken enough to coat the back of your spoon/spatula. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter until melted and smooth.
8. Strain the lemon curd through a sieve into a large jug. Fill two sterilised glass jars with the curd and seal each with a lid. When the curd is completely cold, store the jars in the fridge for up to 2 months. If there is any left over keep it to one side to use for the topping.
9. When the cake is ready to assemble, whip up the cream with the vanilla extract until it will form soft peaks when the whisk is lifted. Spoon the cream over the cold cake using a palette knife, coat the top and sides making sure to smooth as you go. Drizzle lemon curd over the cake and serve. The cake won’t keep for long because of the cream, however if your family and friends are like mine you don’t need to worry about that.