I didn’t know this until now, but you know what they say- knowledge is power. March is Women’s History Month. We fancy ourselves to be ‘by women, for women’ around here, so we have some things in store for you to celebrate.
First up on the chopping block? Family recipes from the women who came before us. My Great Grandmother was born in 1896 and died in the 1970’s, I imagine that if my Great Grandmother could see us now, she’d never have dreamt how far women and women’s rights have come. Further, what would she even think of the internet?
It’s funny the things people remain famous for long after their time on this Earth is done, and this angel food cake is one of the much discussed parts of my Great Grandmother’s legacy. Muz lived with her husband and seven children in San Angelo, Texas and because her oldest child had special needs, she stayed home to care for him and wasn’t able to move freely about town. One of the ways she kept herself busy was making cakes.
She knew everyone’s favorite cake, and she freely made them for family and friends. Legend has it, she even had cake boxes that had her name on them to deliver them in.
This Angel Food Cake is my Mother’s favorite cake that Muz made, and a few years ago I learned that it is my husband’s favorite too.
Fair warning, it takes A LOT of eggs. Like a lot.
Angel Food Cake isn’t hard, but it is ‘fussy’. You can’t underbeat the egg whites, you DEFINITELY can’t get any bit of yolk in them, and then of course, you have to sift the ever loving bejeezus out of the flour. That, in case you’re wondering, is a technical term. My parents got me an electric sifter a few years ago, and I will tell you this- If you do any sifting at all, it’s an investment that will pay off. Do it do it do it.
This recipe calls for cake flour, BUT take heart if you don’t have any on hand- you can use One Cup of All Purpose flour, less two tablespoons of Flour, add two tablespoons of corn starch. I made this cake twice this weekend, and there was no discernible difference in the substitution.
I scored this fluted cake pan at an estate sale a decade ago for $7 and this is also one of the odd workhorses of my kitchen. It’s a springform, it’s a fluted pan, it’s just a plain circle cake pan. I love a transforming kitchen product.
Make sure, when it’s time to pour your batter in the pan that your pan is damp. You can just rinse it out and dump the excess water but do not dry it.
Isn’t she a beauty? Angelfood cake is a no fat cake, so I imagine the ladies of the 50’s who counted fat grams with giant slices after dinner.
There is absolutely no comparison to mix Angel Food and Store bought angel food. Also, once you make this cake, I promise you will also NOT buy one of those grocery store abominations. This is so much better.
To cool this cake, you’re supposed to turn it over on a bottle like so. Is this lore? Maybe. But you know what? Some things aren’t supposed to be questioned, and this is one of them.
Before you run your knife around the sides, take special care to cool the cake completely.
And VOILA. You can serve this with fruit, whipping cream, seven minute frosting, or straight up. I’m a straight up girl.
The crumb on this cake is outrageous, you’ll love it. I promise.