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Angel Food Cake




"I feel the end approaching.
Quick, bring me my dessert, coffee and liqueur."
- Pierette, great-aunt of Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

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Angel Food Cake
Great American Cakes - Barbara Kafka
Gourmet December 1987

 “Angel food cake is so named because it is pure white and light as a cloud.
Always make sure your pan is scrupulously clean; otherwise the cake will not
rise properly. Just before using the pan wipe it out with vinegar and then rinse
it well and wipe it dry. Angel food cake is particularly nice served with crushed berries. I never ice it. If you don't have an angel food cake server pull slices
away with two forks.”

2/3 cup plus 3/4 cup superfine granulated sugar
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
2/3 cup cake flour
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup egg whites at room temperature (about 7 to 9 large egg whites)
3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Into a bowl sift 2/3 cup of the superfine sugar 3 times and reserve it.
Into another bowl sift together the remaining 3/4 cup superfine sugar, the confectioner's sugar, flour and cornstarch 3 times and reserve the flour mixture. In the large bowl of an electric miser beat the whites at medium speed until they are frothy, add the cream of tartar and salt, beating, and beat the whites until they just hold very soft peaks. With the mixer at medium speed, beat in the reserved superfine sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, and when it is all added beat the meringue at medium speed for exactly 1 minute and
30 seconds. Sift one third of the reserved flour mixture over the meringue
and fold it in until it is incorporated partially. Sift half the remaining reserved flour mixture over the meringue and fold it in with 3 or 4 strokes. Sift the remaining reserved flour mixture over the meringue and fold it in with the vanilla until the mixture is combined well. Spoon the batter into a cleaned and dried tube pan, 10-by-8 1/4-by-4 1/4 inches, preferably with a removable bottom, smoothing the top, rap the pan on a hard surface twice to expel any air bubbles, and bake the cake in the middle of a preheated 350-degree F.
oven for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the top if golden and the cake begins
to pull away slightly from the side of the pan. Invert the pan over the neck
of a bottle and let the cake cool upside down for 1 hour. Run a long thin
knife around the edge and the tube of the pan and invert the cake onto
a plate.

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