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Angel food cake is one of the most versatile desserts we know. It pairs perfectly with fresh fruit, is excellent with Seven Minute Frosting for a sumptuous no-cholesterol treat, and is unforgettable with a drizzle of warm chocolate sauce.
1 cup (4 1/4 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour or King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour Blend
1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) sugar
12 large egg whites, at room temperature*
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract, or a combination
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
*Or substitute 3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) dried egg whites + 1 1/4 cups cold water.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and 3/4 cup of the sugar. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, combine the egg whites, salt and extract. Beat until the mixture is just frothy, then sprinkle the cream of tartar on top and continue beating until they form stiff, glossy peaks. Add the remaining sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, then gradually fold in the dry ingredients.
Spoon the batter into an ungreased angel food pan, and bake the cake in a preheated 325°F oven for 40 to 45 minutes, or until it's golden brown and the top springs back when lightly touched. Remove the cake from the oven, and place it upside down on a bottle or metal funnel to keep from crushing the top. Let the cake cool for 1 1/2 hours. This cooling period sets the structure, and keeps the cake from collapsing.
Loosen the edges of the cake with a knife, and remove it from the pan. Frost with Seven Minute Frosting, flavored whipped cream, or chocolate sauce.
Spread the icing on the cake, and decorate with sprinkles or silver dragées, if desired. Yield: 1 cake, about 16 servings.
Tip: Using our unbleached cake flour blend, in place of all-purpose flour, yields a taller, more tender angel food cake.