Lime Angel Food Cake with Pistachios and Lime Glaze

30 Jul

Lime Angel Food Cake

I’ve had my eye on Angel Food Cake for quite some time, but up until now there have been two major obstacles that have stood between me and this sweet fluffy cloud on a plate. Obstacle number one; I didn’t own an angel food pan, and obstacle number two; All those egg whites. Just the thought of using all those egg whites, separating 8-10 eggs, what to do with the leftover yolks, the stress and worry of it all. Gah! Well, unlike most other obstacles in my life I have overcome these particular ones with gusto. I did so by one; buying the much needed angel food pan, and two; powdered egg whites suckas! No mess, no leftovers, just egg whites broken down into a pale dust. Sounds delicious no? Don’t get too close, the dust smells like meringues and I accidentally breathed it in and momentarily choked. It was most unattractive I’m sure. For my first ever Angel Food Cake I decided to go for something a little more exciting than just the plain egg white sponge. So when I happened upon this recipe for Lime Angel Food Cake with Lime Glaze by Baked owners Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito I knew this was the one I wanted to try. It looked great in the pictures (I assumed of course that my cake would turn out exactly like this and anything to the contrary would be sure to cause violent disappointment).

*Note* Angel Food Cake should always be cooled upside down in its’ tin. This prevents the cake from collapsing into itself and becoming a flat mess. If cooled in this way it will maintain the fluffy height you worked so hard to achieve by whipping up all those egg whites. If you’re very lucky you’ll have one of those tins that has little feet at the bottom that allow it to stand up by itself. Alternatively you can balance the tin over a glass bottle by placing the neck of the bottle into the tube in the centre of the tin. It sounds dodgy but I have seen it done successfully by many people. If however you’re like me and you fail at everything in life, then the tube of your cake pan will be too narrow to fit around a bottle. But don’t despair; clothes pegs clipped to the bottom of the pan will act like little feet and keep it elevated. Just make sure you use enough to support its weight. I balanced the centre tube on a stack of small steel condiment pots. I felt it was more stable than the pegs.

Pistachio Topping

Lime Angel Food Cake with Lime Glaze.

1½ cups caster sugar
1 cup plain flour
¼ teaspoon salt
10 large egg whites at room temperature (or relevant number of powdered egg white sachets according to box)
2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cream of tartar

Glaze
½ cup granulated sugar
4 tablespoons fresh lime juice
½ cup pistachios roughly chopped
½ cup icing sugar

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C and place a rack in the centre.
  • In a medium bowl sift together ½ cup of caster sugar, the flour, and the salt. Repeat this process 2 more times (sift everything 3 times in total)
  • Beat the egg whites on medium speed {if using powdered egg whites prepare them according to instructions on the pack} together with the lime zest and vanilla using an electric beater. Whisk until frothy. Sprinkle the cream of tartar over the mixture and and beat on medium-high speed until soft peaks form.
  • Gradually add the remaining 1 cup of caster sugar and beat just until stiff peaks form. Sprinkle one-third of the flour mixture over the egg whites. VERY gently, fold in the flour. Add half of the remaining flour and fold in gently. Then add the rest of the flour and fold in gently until just incorporated.
  • Transfer the batter to an ungreased angel cake pan with a removable bottom. Smooth the surface of the batter with a spoon or spatula.
  • Bake for 35-38 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through. The cake is done when it is pale golden in colour and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.When it is ready to come out of the oven immediately turn it upside to cool, either on its’ feet, a bottle, or pegs. Leave to cool completely.
  • When cool use a long thin knife cut around the sides of the cake and the centre tube to loosen it. Lift out the base of the pan and run the knife along the base of the pan. Remove the cake gently from the pan and invert onto a wire rack. Set the rack with the cake onto a rimmed baking sheet ready to decorate.

Lime Glaze

  • In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir together the granulated sugar and 3 tablespoons of the lime juice until the sugar dissolves. Brush the lime syrup over the cake and immediately press the finely chopped pistachios over the syrup so they stick.
  • In a small bowl whisk together the icing sugar and the remaining 1 tablespoon of lime juice. Stir until smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the top of the cake. Let set for about 10 minutes before serving.

The cake can be stored covered at room temperature for up to 3 days but is best served within 48 hours.

Angel Food Cake

A little too much air was knocked out of my mixture when I was folding in the flour. Possibly because the powdered egg whites just didn’t work as well as fresh ones would have, or perhaps even the most gentle folding technique I could muster was too barbaric for the delicate mixture. I also think this cake would be best served with some freshly whipped cream to cut some of the sweetness.

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