Did I tell you I got selected to be a home-cook tester for Cook’s Country magazine recipes? Cook’s Country is a spin off of America’s Test Kitchen on PBS. In the midst of the madness of the Valentine’s floral holiday I got an email with my first recipe – I have to make the recipe and fill out a survey by 2/23 – rather than wait until this weekend, I finagled leaving work a little early today and stopped by the grocery and picked up some red food coloring (- I needed 2 bottles, and they only had one, I took every bottle of every color off the shelf, and finally found a second bottle behind all the yellows!) I want this red food coloring because I thought the plain angle food cake recipe sounded a little boring (!) A N Y W A Y, I had decided to make it with a twist – I turned it into a Red Velvet Angel food cake. Have you ever had Red Velvet Cake? It’s a chocolate cake basically with a lot of red food coloring in it.
Since I had decided the recipe was boring (as I mentioned above) I went to the grocery store and bought 2 bottles of red food coloring to make it a red velvet angel food cake (added cocoa also) ($2.50 per bottle! geez, that *&^%&*^’s expensive, I could have bled 2 oz, but it might not have made a red cake) it’s a beautiful color – can’t wait until it comes out and I can go do the survey – I wonder if they will kick me out for altering their recipe!!!
Before I could get my beautiful batter into the oven I remembered that Wally told me to print 100 things for Mark at Anmar Photography – ooooops, I’m in trouble, forgot about it. Hope I don’t get fired!
Here’s the recipe they sent – I mixed 3 tablespoons of Dutch process cocoa with 2 bottles (2 oz) of red food coloring and the vanilla and added it to the mix where it says add vanilla and mix well. This is a recipe for an angel food cake I don’t know if you’ve ever made one but it includes 12 egg whites beat until they are very big – I got some great height out of mine and as I go to put the batter into the oven I can’t get the friggin door open! I figure my oven thermometer has fallen and wedged in the door somehow so I’m shaking the darn thing and shaking it and I notice on the panel it says “door locked” – I had accidentally hit the auto clean button! 30 minutes later I can put my cake in, it deflated a little – not a whole lot – but who knows if it will work!
About this time I figure it’s happy hour and time for a cocktail, I get my Maker’s Mark and splash of Cointreau poured and open up one of those cute little bottles of ginger ale and poor it in and it doesn’t bubble, friggin ginger ale is flat! and it’s a new bottle! and it’s the last bottle!
I’m having a day I think. I’ll try to save you a piece of cake! The batter is delish and such a great color!
Here’s the cake right out of the oven, those little framed portraits in the background are Richard and my Paris Metro Pass pics from 1988 – cute, huh!
GOAL: Angel food cake from the supermarket bakery is dense and chewy – more like a very sweet sponge cake. We wanted a classic angel food cake with light, pillowy texture that melts in your mouth like cotton candy. Since angel food cake relies on a tricky technique and laborious steps, we wanted to take the fear out of angel food cake and simplify the technique to produce a cake with heavenly texture every time.
ANGEL FOOD CAKE
Serves 10 to 12
If your angel food cake pan does not have a removable bottom, line the bottom of the tube pan with parchment paper and gently tap pan upside down on counter to release it from the pan. Do not grease the tube pan before baking the cake or it will not rise properly.
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (4½ ounces) cake flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1¾ cups sugar
12 large egg whites, room temperature
1½ teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. PROCESS SUGAR Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat oven to 325 degrees. Whisk flour and salt in bowl. Process sugar in food processor until fine and powdery, about 1 minute. Reserve half of sugar in small bowl. Add flour mixture to food processor with remaining sugar and process until aerated, about 1 minute.
2. BEAT WHITES With electric mixer on medium-low speed, beat egg whites and cream of tartar until frothy, about 1 minute. Increase speed to medium-high. With motor running, slowly add reserved sugar and beat until soft peaks form, about 6 minutes. Add vanilla and mix until incorporated.
3. SIFT AND FOLD Sift flour mixture over egg whites in 3 additions, folding gently with rubber spatula after each addition until incorporated. Scrape mixture into 16-cup tube pan.
4. BAKE Bake until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean and cracks in cake appear dry, 40 to 45 minutes. Cool, inverted, to room temperature, about 3 hours. To unmold, run a knife along interior of pan. Turn out onto platter. Serve.
What can I say! I’m a monkey who can bake and knit hats!