Alas! I finally have a successful angel food cake. Thank God I did because this was Shawn's birtheday cake (he's old now, I'm dating a grandpa...haha ok 24 isn't bad) but he's been requesting an angel food cake with strawberries for a while now so I thought for his birthday I would make it happen (since I messed it up the first time I tried). I tried to make one for Shawn before when I made the Angel Food Cake with a Honey Lemon Yogurt Sauce but didn't nail the texture. With the tips I talked about on that post, I'd say I nailed this one. This one actually reminds me a lot of my great grandmas angel food cake. This is DELICIOUS and super super easy. And one other thing that makes angel food cake so great aside from its heavenly light fluffy texture is that is has no fat...a cake with no fat! Yay! This recipe seems intimidating but I promise you it is not as hard as it looks at all and it is soooo worth it. The strawberry cream is to die for. I will be making this for the rest of my life...
Strawberry Cream Angel Food Cake
Cake Adapted From Foodnetwork.com
Strawberry Cream From Foodnetwork.com
for the cake:
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
for the strawberry cream:
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, at room temperature (I used neufchatel)
1 (12 ounce) can condensed milk (I used reduced fat)
1/3 cup lemon juice
2 teaspoons almond liqueur, plus 2 teaspoons, or 1/2 teaspoon almond extract, plus 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
2 1/2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
Whole strawberries, stems removed, as garnish
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. (When inserted halfway between the inner and outer wall, the skewer should come out dry).
Cool upside down on cooling rack for at least an hour before removing from pan.
Using a serrated cake or bread knife, carefully cut the top 1-inch from the cake. Carefully remove and set aside. Using the tip of the knife, cut into the cake along the inner and outer edges, leaving a 1-inch border of cake intact. Using your fingers, carefully hollow out the cake between the two cuts, leaving an empty "tunnel". Tear the removed cake into bite-size pieces and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add the condensed milk and beat until thoroughly combined. Stir in lemon juice and 2 teaspoons of the liqueur. Gently fold in the cake pieces and strawberries. Spoon the mixture into the tunnel in the center of the hollowed out cake, and cover with the reserved cake top. Cover cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 8 hours or overnight.
When ready to serve the cake, whip the cream until it begins to form peaks Add the confectioners' sugar and remaining 2 teaspoons of liqueur. Whip until the cream forms stiff peaks but is not dry. Frost the cake with the whipped cream and decorate with reserved whole strawberries. Refrigerate for up to 1 hour, or serve immediately