Angel Food Cake Delight + 5 Retro Cakes for Spring!

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I turned to Betty Crocker for inspiration this week.  Every so often I find myself leafing through my Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook, the cookbook my grandmother gave me after Bubba and I married.  “You’ll need this, it has everything.” she promised.  At first glance, I judged the cookbook for its lack of “healthy” recipes, horrible food photography and sexist illustrations of family life.  I tucked it away in our bookcase with the plan of donating it.  Years passed, but Betty remained on our book shelf.  I couldn’t part with her.  This dated, meant for “home-makers” cookbook gave me a glimpse of a time before social media, mommy wars, barre and kale smoothies, quinoa and hemp seeds.  As much as the Mad Men era illustrations of mom in heels baking a cake with 2 kids underfoot and Dad in a suit sampling her hard work with a smug look on his face enraged me, I couldn’t help but notice the common ground across generations.  Women ministering to their loved ones by making delicious food.  Homemaker or not, food is love, it was then and it still is today.

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Angel Food Cake Delight     

Light and airy angel food cake filled with honey whipped cream and fresh berries        

Serves 10-12

Recipe barely adapted from Baking Illustrated and inspired by Betty Crocker’s Picture Cookbook

Ingredients for Angel Food Cake:

1 cup sifted cake flour

1 1/2 cups sifted sugar

12 large egg whites, at room temperature

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Directions for Cake:

Move an oven rack to the lower-middle position and pre-heat your oven to 325F.  Set aside an ungreased large tube pan with a removable bottom.  ( If you can’t remove the bottom, line it with parchment paper.)

Whisk together the flour and 3/4 cup of the sugar in a small bowl.  Place the other 3/4 cup of sugar in a small bowl and set aside.

Using a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on low-speed until they break up and begin to froth.  Add the cream of tartar and salt.  Turn the speed up to medium and beat until the whites form soft mounds.   Beat in remaining 3/4 cup sugar, just 1 tablespoon at a time, until all the sugar is added and the whites form soft peaks and are shiny.  Next add vanilla and lemon juice and beat until just combined.

Turn off the mixer and sift third of the flour/sugar mixture over the whites.  Using a rubber spatula, gently fold them in.  Sift the remaining flour/sugar mixture of the whites and gently fold.  Scrape the batter into your pan.  Smooth the top with a spatula.  Gently bang the pan on the counter a few times to release any air bubbles.

Bake until the cake is golden brown and the top springs back when you touch it with your finger, about 50-60 minutes.

Remove the cake from the oven and invert it onto the prongs of the pan or use the neck of a glass bottle.  Allow the cake to cool for 2 to 3 hours before removing it from the pan.

Once cool, run a knife around the edges of the pan.  Slice the cake out the pan and carefully slice off the removable bottom.   Set the cake golden brown side up on a cake platter or stand.

Using a serrated knife cut 1 inch the top of the cake off.  Set aside.  Carefully cut down into the cake, leaving a 1 inch border from the middle hole and cake “wall” and 1 inch base.  Scope out the inside of the cake and set aside. (Keep the scraps for nibbling!)

Fill the hollowed area of the cake with your honey whipped cream/berry mixture.   Place cake top on and press gently.  Cover the rest of the cake with the remaining whipped cream.  Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to over-night.  The cake, refrigerated, will last up to 2 days, but I doubt you will have leftovers.  Enjoy!

Honey Whipped Cream  + Fresh Berry Mixture

Recipe adapted from Betty Crocker’s Picture Cookbook

Ingredients:

3 cups heavy cream

5-6 tablespoons of honey  (light flavored)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup blueberries

1/2 cup raspberries

1 cup strawberries, hulled and sliced in quarters

Directions:

Start with a chilled bowl and beater.  Add cold heavy cream to the bowl and beat until the cream thickens.  Add honey and vanilla and continue to beat until the cream creates stiff peaks.  Be careful not to overbeat!   Remove less than half of the whipped cream and place in a small bowl.  (Set aside remaining whipped cream.)  Using a rubber spatula fold in the berries.  Use the berry mixture to fill the cake and use the remaining whip cream to cover the entire cake.

**You can make the whipped cream (without the berries) ahead of time.  Be sure to store it in an air-tight container in the fridge.  It will stay fresh for up to 10 hours.  Whisk for about 10 minutes before using and then proceed with the recipe.**

5 Retro Cake Links for Spring

Love upside down cakes? Try Sally’s Baking Addictions Pineapple Upside-Down Cake made from scratch!

For the coconut lovers in your life make Coconut Queen Party Cake with Marshmallow Frosting.  Head to Mid-Century Menu for the recipe.

I just discovered the Lady Baltimore Cake today and apparently it is Martha Stewart’s’ favorite.  Check it out here.

If you need a simple, old fashion cake make Betty’s Banana Layer Cake.  I love all things banana so this is going on my must make list.

My grandmother use to make this delightful and tasty chocolate cake roll all the time.  Thanks for reminding me Smitten Kitchen!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Angel Food Cake with Lemon Cream + 5 Angel Food Cakes Recipes You Should Try!

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Our sweet baby boy, Nate, surprised us all and arrived 2 weeks early. Like his big sister, he arrived just before another major snow storm hit Boston. Everything went smoothly, but it is hard to believe he is finally here. We are now a family of five. C and G are in love; Bubba and I are slowly adjusting to life with three kids. Alice, our fury fourth, seems to have this expression on her face that says: really? another one? Bubba will be home with us for the next month, which will make this transition so much easier. I can’t imagine getting through this with anyone else. The kids love to have daddy home all the time and I am so grateful for the help.

Shortly, after arriving home, G asked me to make something. Really? I just gave birth. I am so tired. I can’t do this now. C chimed in, “something sweet mama.” I needed to rest and recover, but they needed me again. They need mama, even if, mama just had another baby. So, I decided to make an angel food cake with a lemon whipped cream. The kids and Bubba love angel food cake and the lemon whipped cream seemed like the perfect topping to brighten our winter palettes. The cake and cream came together fairly quickly. Nate interrupted me a couple of times to nurse, but that is my reality, at least for now. It is ok. It passes by so fast. That saying “the days are long but the years are short” is so, so true. I remind myself of this when I up at 2am and then again at 4am.

I used Ina Garten’s lemon angel food cake recipe and adapted it only by omitting the lemon zest. Her recipe is by far the best angel food cake recipe I have tried. The cake comes out moist and airy. It is not overly sweet like many of the store-bought versions. The lemon whipped cream recipe is from Martha Stewart. I did not alter her recipe because it is perfect. Her whipped cream has the right amount of lemon flavor and sweetness. The only thing I wish I added was fresh berries but I didn’t have any in the house. Next time! Come summer when berries are abundant, I will make this again.

Ok got to get back to my 3 goosies.

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Angel Food Cake

serves about 8

recipe barely adapted from Ina Garten

Ingredients:

2 cups sifted superfine sugar, divided

1 1/3 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising)

1 dozen egg whites, at room temperature

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar

3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions:

Pre-heat your oven to 350 F.

In a medium bowl combine 1/2 cup of the sugar with the flour. Sift together 4 times and set aside.

Place the egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and beat on high-speed for  about 1 minute or until the egg whites make medium firm peaks. Reduce the speed to medium and add the remaining 1 1/2 cups of sugar by sprinkling it over the beaten egg whites. Beat for a few minutes until thick and shiny. Add the vanilla and continue to whisk for about 1 more minute or until thick.

Sift about 1/4 of the flour mixture over the egg whites and fold it into the batter with a rubber spatula. Keep adding the sifted flour by fourths and folding until it’s all incorporated.

Pour the batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan. Smooth the top, and bake it for about 35 to 40 minutes or  until it springs back. Remove the cake from the oven and invert the pan on a cooling rack. Allow to cool completelyy. Remove from the pan and serve at room temperature with lemon cream and fresh berries if you have them. Cake will last, well wrapped, at room temperature for several days. Enjoy!

Lemon Cream

Recipe from Martha Stewart

Ingredients:

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon cake flour (not self-rising)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups heavy cream, chilled

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

Directions:

Prepare an ice-water bath and set aside.

Whisk lemon juice, sugar, flour, and salt in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring mixture to a boil and whisk constantly for 1 minute or until it thickens.

Transfer it to a heat proof bowl set in ice-water bath to cool completely. Stir occasionally.

Whisk chilled cream in a mixer on medium speed until stiff peaks form, about 3 minutes or so. Gently fold whipped cream into juice mixture in thirds.

Add the lemon zest and gently fold to combine. Refrigerate the lemon cream until ready to serve or up to overnight. Enjoy!

5 Angel Food Cake Recipes You Should Try!

I love cupcakes. In fact I am a bit obsessed with cupcakes. I think I may need to try this recipe for angel food cupcakes very soon.

If you love chocolate and angel food cake, try this recipe for chocolate angel food cake with fruit and maple yogurt. Yum!

Like all of us, I am tired of winter. My thoughts turn toward spring and summer. Just the picture of this red, white and blueberry trifle from the blog Skinny Taste makes me happy. I can’t wait to try it this summer!

Angel food cake for breakfast? Yes please! How Sweet It Is has the recipe for angel food cake french toast. Give it a shot this weekend.

Now, what to do with the leftover egg yolks? Babble has a list of 24 ways to use up leftover egg yolks and egg whites. Check it out!

Lime Angel Food Cake with Mixed Berries and Whipped Cream

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Happy almost 4th of July! This is by far my favorite holiday. I love summer food, fireworks and warm weather. When I was a kid, my dad had a huge collection of fireworks. Every 4th and even sometimes on our birthdays he would light a bunch in our back yard. I loved sitting on the deck with my brother and sister watching the night sky light up. To this day I need to see fireworks sometime around the 4th or it just doesn’t feel like summer. While thinking about our plans for the 4th, I started to think about the perfect summertime dessert. For me that dessert is angel food cake

I love angel food cake. I especially love it with seasonal berries and a bit of whipped cream. I have attempted to make this cake many times but not all my attempts have been successful. One time it didn’t rise, another time it was tough and sort of flat and most recently I forgot to set the timer and it burned.  Bubba and kids love angel food cake so I was determined to make one that actually tasted good! I found a recipe for it on the blog Joy the Baker. Check out this fantastic food blog if you haven’t already! I adapted the recipe only by adding lime zest and lime juice. I love lime in cakes and cookies. Also, we have a bunch of limes in the house because Bubba likes a gin and tonic especially in the summertime.

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I added the zest of one lime to half of the sugar mixture. (Blend with your fingers any citrus zest with sugar before adding it to a batter and the citrus flavor will be more pronounced. The oils in the zest are released when you blend them with the sugar.)

_KH10010I love how sifted flour looks like freshly fallen snow.

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When you beat the egg whites be sure not to over beat them. You do not want stiff peaks. The egg whites should double in volume and look glossy.

_KH10014Fold the flour mixture into the egg whites in 4 batches. Over mixing will cause the egg whites to deflate. Once incorporated, pour batter into an ungreased tube pan. Bake at 350 degrees for about 40-45 minutes.

_KH10020 While your cake cooks, combine 1 pint of mixed berries in a bowl with 2-4 teaspoons of sugar depending on how sweet your berries taste. Set aside at room temperature for about 30 minutes or until the berries release some of their juices. The fruit can be refrigerated in an air tight container for up to a day.

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This how my cake turned out. Not bad, not perfect but it did taste great. The lime zest and juice is a nice addition but the fresh, local berries really stole the show. Have a very happy 4th!

Lime Angel Food Cake with Mixed Berries and Whipped Cream

Slightly adapted from Joy the Baker

makes 1 cake

Ingredients

1 3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup cake flour, sifted

12 large egg whites, at room temperature

1/3 cup warm water

zest of one lime

2 teaspoons of lime juice

1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar

1 pint of mixed berries ( I used a combination of blueberries, strawberries and raspberries)

2 to 4 teaspoons sugar (depending on how sweet your berries are)

Directions

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees and place the rack in the middle.

In the bowl of a food processor, fitted with the blade attachment, grind sugar for about 2 minutes.  (This will make  a super fine sugar that will absorb easier into the egg whites.)

Place half of the sugar in a small bowl  and add lime zest. Blend the lime zest and the sugar together with your fingertips for about a minute.

Sift together the remaining sugar, salt, and cake flour.  Set aside.

Using an electric stand mixer, fitted with a whisk attachment, beat together the egg whites, water, lime juice, and cream of tartar at medium speed. Increase the speed to medium high, gradually adding the sugar from the small bowl, until medium peaks form. You do not want stiff peaks.

Sift in one-quarter of the flour and sugar mixture and gently fold with a spatula. Do not over mix or it will deflate the egg whites!   Add the flour mixture in three more batches.  Fold until completely incorporated. Spoon batter into ungreased tube pan.

Bake for 40 to 45 minutes but start checking with a skewer at 37 minutes. Once the skewer comes out clean, the cake is done.  Remove cake from the oven and place it upside down on a cooling rack for at least an hour. Gently remove from pan once cool.

Mix berries with 2-4 teaspoons of sugar and set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes or until the berries release their juices. Lightly whip cream in a cold bowl , adding a bit of vanilla extract and sugar, if you like your whipped cream that way.

Slice cake and serve with berries and whipped cream. Store cake, well wrapped, at room temperature for up to 3 days. Enjoy!