Monday, February 22, 2010

Angel food cake

Ernie made flan and creme brulee for Valentine's Day, both of which require egg yolks. I just happened to have a bunch of egg whites leftover from his cooking, so I figured I'd make an angel food cake.
This is far easier than I figured it was, because I'm always apprehensive about working with egg whites once they've been whipped. The cake is a little sweet for me; I'll probably cut down the sugar to 1 1/2 c. the next time I make it. All I know is, I'll never make angel food cake from the box again.

from The Man, Alton Brown

1 3/4 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup cake flour, sifted
12 egg whites (the closer to room temperature the better)
1/3 cup warm water
1 teaspoon orange extract, or extract of your choice
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a food processor spin sugar about 2 minutes until it is superfine. Sift half of the sugar with the salt the cake flour, setting the remaining sugar aside.
In a large bowl, use a balloon whisk to thoroughly combine egg whites, water, orange extract, and cream of tartar. After 2 minutes, switch to a hand mixer. Slowly sift the reserved sugar, beating continuously at medium speed. Once you have achieved medium peaks, sift enough of the flour mixture in to dust the top of the foam. Using a spatula fold in gently. Continue until all of the flour mixture is incorporated.
Carefully spoon mixture into an ungreased tube pan. Bake for 35 minutes before checking for doneness with a wooden skewer. (Mine took 45 minutes to bake)
Cool upside down on cooling rack for at least an hour before removing from pan.

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