Angel Food Cake! This airy cake is so easy to make and they’re like a cross between marshmallow and meringue cake, it’s so soft and fluffy.
I had been wanting to make this Angel Food Cake every time I have a leftover egg whites. This normally happens whenever I make my small batch cookies. If there is one thing I used my leftover egg whites aside from French Macaroons or Meringue Cookies, it’s this cake. So let us talk more about this cake.
What is Angel Food Cake?
Angel Food Cake is a type of cake that belongs to the family of sponge cake. It uses the basic ingredients like flour, sugar and egg. Unlike most cake the uses whole egg, Angel Food Cake uses only egg whites and it doesn’t use any butter or fat. Angel Food Cake uses whipped egg whites and stabilizing agent (like cream of tartar) to give the cake the lift and structure. No other rising agent like baking powder or baking soda is used as the cake relies in whipped egg whites for structure. Although I wouldn’t say this to be 100% always true, as you might find some recipes that adds a little bit of rising agent to make Angel Food Cake. Just like any other sponge cake, the texture of this cake is VERY light and airy, almost like a cross marshmallow and meringue. It’s soft and slightly chewy just like a soft meringue.
What if I don’t have cake flour?
Cake flour or self rising flour is a lower protein flour (8 – 10 %). As the name goes, this type of flour is commonly used to make Cakes because it provides a lighter and airy texture especially cakes like Sponge cake or Chiffon cake. It is basically flour mixed with salt and baking powder. If you do not have one on hand, because not most household store cake flour unless you bake often, you can make your own cake flour at home. Simply add 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon salt per cup of all-purpose flour, that’s the closest that you can get. Although that there might a slight difference in terms of protein content as All-purpose flour protein could range between 10 – 12%.
Can I use regular sugar instead of confectioners sugar?
Confectioners sugar has a very fine powdered like texture which makes is easy to dissolve, and it also provides a lighter texture. You can substitute it with granulated sugar or you can make your own powdered sugar by simply processing the regular sugar in a food processor or high speed blender until it is fine and almost powdered like. If using granulated sugar, make sure to feel the egg whites from time to time to check if you can still feel the coarse granule of the sugar. The idea is that you should not feel it, it should be smooth to the touch.
How to serve Angel Food Cake
Angel Food Cake is a very simple cake. It can be served on its own with just a dust of icing sugar on top, some fresh sliced fruits on the side and a little doll-up of whipped cream or custard cream is not a bad idea too. Keeping it simple is my preferred way of serving it, no heavy icing to cover the cake. But then again, it is your cake, decorate and serve it as you please bottom line is serve it the way that you would enjoy to eat it.
Tips for a successful Angel Food Cake
- Do NOT grease the pan: Since the cake relies on the egg white for the structure, the cake needs something to cling to as it rise, thus helping it to stay in place and not slide or collapse. This is way the traditional tube pan for Angle food cake are not none-stick pans.
- Room temperature egg whites: Room temperature egg whites whips better, all the time. So if you want to get the nice glossy stiff peaks, use only room temperature egg white. Take the egg out at least 30 minutes before using it, or submerge it in a warm water for 5 minutes. Separating it while it is still cold makes it easier to handle, so separate the egg white and egg yolk and just leave it in the counter until ready to use.
- Sift the dry ingredients: Sifting the dry ingredients incorporates air and make the mixture lighter, and with Angel Food Cake it is always about making it light and airy as possible.
- Fold the Egg Whites: do NOT use a mixer to do this. Manually fold the egg whites to the dry ingredients making sure to not knock out the air that was build during whipping.
- Immediately cool it upside-down in a cooling rack with lots of airflow. This helps the cake from not collapsing.
- 1/4 cup Confectioners/Icing Sugar
- 1/4 cup Cake Flour
- 1/8 teaspoon Salt
- 2 large Egg whites – room temperature
- 2 tablespoon Granulated Sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon pure Vanilla Extract
- 1/4 teaspoon Cream of Tartar
Note: For bigger batch, simple double the recipe to make 4 small cakes.
- Heat oven to 350° degrees. Line a 5-inch round pan with parchment paper. Do NOT grease the pan, preferably do NOT use a non-stick pan. If you have a spring form pan (the bottom release easily), that would be the best pan to use.
- Dry Ingredients: In a small bowl, sift confectioners sugar, cake flour and salt. Set aside
- Whip Egg Whites: In a medium size bowl, add the egg whites, granulated sugar and cream of tartar. With a hand mixer. Start on low and gradually increase until on high. Whip until meringue becomes glossy and stiff like this.
- Dry Ingredients + Wet Ingredients: Gently fold the dry ingredients mixture into the egg white mixture. Once combined, evenly fill each pan 3/4 full and level the top.
- Bake at 350F for 20 – 22 minutes or until slightly golden brown. Once out of the oven, turn the ramekins/pan upside down so the cake can cool, stabilize and not collapse.
- Serve: Run a spatula around the pan and release the bottom. Transfer in a serving plate, dust with icing sugar and top with fresh fruits.
Note: Nutrition calculation do not include any toppings or filling/frosting
Recipe Adapted from: makeandtaste.com
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