Lemon Angel Food Cake – Flavoring the Cake and Combining Ingredients

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 14,919
    Chef Karen Stiegler demonstrates flavoring the cake and combining ingredients for a lemon angel food cake.

    Karen Stiegler: Hi! My name is Karen Stiegler, and today I am here talking to you about Healthy Baking and showing you how to make a fat free Lemon Angel Food Cake.

    So we just got done beating our whites to stiff peak. They are ready to go with the sugar and everything in them and now we are going to add our vanilla. And for vanilla, just buy a good quality vanilla, a real vanilla extract, don't buy artificial. Artificial is made from lots of not so great things, one of them is from wood pulp. So you don't want wood pulp in your desert. So most grocery stores have a real vanilla extract that you can buy, and it's a expensive for a bottle but you just use tiny bit at a time. So it's worth the investment. So we have the vanilla here and we are just going to add this in and then I am going to just whisk it up to blend that in, okay. And then the next thing I am going to do is I am going to transfer it over to this bigger bowl because my mixer bowl is a little bit small to do the final combining.

    Now one word of caution, when you have your whisk, you don't want to whack your whisk on your bowl because you will lose all that lovely froth that you got from beating the egg whites. So just remember, don't hit your spatula or your beater on there. And if any didn't get mixed in, you can just kind of smooth it in, it will get get mixed in because we have several other ingredients to add, okay. So you can see how soft and velvety and thick and delicious it looks. Now once you learn how to master and how to do this beating of the egg whites, this is the base for all sorts of fat-free desserts. There is meringues, marshmallows are made from this, there are many types of icings or frostings that are made with beaten egg whites. So it's really good thing to know and it's all very similar, okay.

    So we have our egg whites here. Now the last flavor ingredient of course is lemon. So I want to talk about that for a minute. You want to choose a lemon that is smooth, has a nice surface, it's free of blemishes. And if you want you can buy organic, this might be a time when you would want to since we are using just the peel of the lemon. But it's okay if you can't get it, you can use a conventionally grown lemon. But when you get at home, make sure you scrub it and clean it with a vegetable brush before you use it, and wash it off.

    So I have here two graters; this is a microplane zester or grater, and this is a regular sort of grater that you would typically have. I really recommend the microplane, it gives you very thin wispy pieces of the lemon rinds, it's really nice. But if you don't have that, you don't have to go out and buy something new, you can just use your regular grater.

    So today, I am going to use the microplane. And you just want to get the outside layer or the really yellow part of the lemon, that's where all these essentials oils are and that's where a lot of the lemon flavor comes from, and we don't want to get any of the white pith. So this zester or grater does a really good job. So I am just going to do it right over the bowl here. So I just turn it as I go and I can see that the lemon zest is coming off in the bowl, and it's also coming off my lemon. And also you can see it here on the backside of the lemon zester, so it's really nice.

    Now this is a really great lemon because we are not seeing a lot of white here. So we are doing a good job. So we just want to continue to go around, and it's a quite of bit of lemon zest in this recipe, it's about one-and-half teaspoons. You can do this over a cutting board if you would rather and then just transfer the lemon zest, okay. So I am not really measuring here today. You could do this on a cutting board and then you could measure it out, alright.

    So I have got my lemon zest there and then I want to just fold it in, okay. So for the folding you want to use a big spatula like this, rubber or plastic, and you don't them stirring or a quick motion, you just want to go around the bowl and then turn the egg whites over themselves, okay. And then you could keep turning your bowl, and you want to scoop down the middle once in a while, okay. And then that will also get incorporated when we are going to add in our flour.

    So we have got our vanilla, and we have got our lemon zest in for flavoring. And now we've got our mixture that we reserved with our cake flour sifted with our half-a-cup of sugar four times. So it's really light and fluffy. Now we don't want to just dump this whole amount in because that would also push down all that air that we got in the egg whites. So I am going to go back to my sifter over here, and I want to just pick this up and we are going to do it a quarter of the dry mixture at a time. So first I am going to put about a quarter, you can just guess, it's not really picky about that, not really specific. And then we are going to sift this over beaten egg whites, okay. So once again, using your sifter, and then we are going to fold that in. So you can see that all these things really have the goal of keeping the cake light and fluffy, and we use that cake flour, we sift it a lot. So you want to just -- you don't have to overly mix it in, we are going to do this in four parts. And then I also have my little bit that's on my paper over here, so I mix that in. And I want to just mix this last bit of flour in till it's just mixed. You don't want any packets of flour in the batter, but we don't want to overdo it either because we want to keep all our nice egg whites. So I am just going to cut through the middle, kind of scrape the bottom, just go slow and easy on this.

    So now we have got our lemon and our vanilla totally mixed in, and our dry ingredients have been sifted in and we are ready to put it in the 10 inch tube pan. So next, I will show you how to put in the pan and how to bake the cake.