I've always loved angel food cake. Growing up I remember my great grandma made it every year and its was the best angel food cake I've ever had. I've always been reluctant to try it from scratch because let's admit, its intimidating to try to make something with such a specific texture. As it turns out, I messed this up...but I quickly figured out what I did wrong and made it again and it turned out beautifully.
It just so happens that I didn't whip it up enough. I was so afraid of overwhipping it that it just fell flat. But if you whip it to medium peaks it will be perfect. In my experience medium peaks are when you pull the beater out and turn it upside down, the batter peaks a little and then falls slightly at the end. You don't want it to peak straight up or it will be dry. Another thing that helps is cracking your egg white to a small glass dish and then into another dish so that if you end up with any yolk at all you can discard it. Just one drop of yolk will screw up the whole cake because that is where the fat is and any fat will compromise your cakes airy, light fluffyness and thats what angel food cakes all about. There's really nothing to be afraid of if you keep these things in mind.
I loved this sauce, it makes a great fruit dip as well. I origionally made this for Shawn because he had been requesting it but the cake was for him and the sauce was for me. For his birthday last week I made a strawberry cream angel food cake that was just divine, so keep your eyes peeled for that post.
PS: the cake featured in the photos is the one that fell flat, when I remade it for Shawns birthday it was lovely...so photos of that to come soon :)
Angel Food Cake with a Honey Lemon Yogurt Sauce
Cake from foodnetwork.com
Sauce from foodnetwork.com
For the cake:
1 cup cake flour
1 cup sugar
12 large egg whites (egg whites from large eggs, no yolks in the whites!)
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 lemon, zested
1 orange, zested
For the sauce:
1 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup honey
1 tablespoon lemon juice
For the cake:
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Sift the flour together with 1/2 cup of the sugar and set aside.
Put the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer. Be sure that the bowl is clean and dry, any fat in the bowl can prevent the egg whites from whipping up fluffy. Add the salt and the cream of tartar to the egg whites. Beat the egg whites on a medium-high speed until they reach soft peaks, about 5 minutes.
While the mixer is running, gradually add the remaining sugar. Dont plop the sugar in all at once or it will push the air out of the whites that we are trying to beat in. Add in the vanilla and zests and then stop the mixer. Add 1/3 of the flour/sugar mixture and fold gently fold, do this quickly but gently. Repeat the process 2 more times until all of the flour/sugar mixture is incorporated.
Transfer the cake batter into an ungreased tube pan.
Bake the cake on a sheet tray in the preheated oven until it is light and springy, about 1 1/4 hours. Cool the cake for at least 1 hour before unmolding.
For the sauce:
In a small bowl whisk together the yogurt, honey, and lemon juice until smooth. Pour into a serving pitcher.
Using a spatula, loosen the cake around the sides and middle. Release the cake and place on a serving plate. Cut into slices and drizzle with the sauce. Garnish with lemon zest.