Angel food cake
Well. I made angel food cake today. From a box. Having read recently (where? NYT? Here? Other?) that angel food cake is actually very good from a box. It was disGUSTing. And even worse when tried just now, a few hours after initially served. Gummy. Icky. Bleh. Bleh. Bleh.
First, from now on I trust my mother on the subject of boxed cake mix.
Second, does anyone have a favorite twitch on the standard recipe (I'll likely use my grandmother's)? You know... Orange juice drizzle and such?
The linked recipe is identical to the recipe in the yellow "Gourmet Cookbook" from 2006, minus the rosewater and grenadine. It is a wonderful recipe. The cake is impressively tall and moist. I've made it multiple times and it's definitely the best recipe I've tried. It's terrific on it's own or with macerated berries.
I made one for Easter and used the leftover egg yolks to make creme anglaise for molten chocolate cakes. I sometimes use them for creme brulee. A rich pasta dough would be another good way to use them up. Otherwise, it can seem wasteful to throw the yolks away.
Not an answer to your question, but I remember my grandmother stopping when we were in the neighboring town to buy Hospitality brand angel food cake mix. She said it was good, but that no other brand was. And most things she baked from scratch. She gave me one too. I remember liking it, but that was before I baked a lot. But I like my angel food cake plain served with either strawberries or orange sherbet.
Déjà vu - my first one (I was about ten years old) must have used a dozen eggs (or more) and all I truly remember is that I had to beat the egg whites until my arm fell off; or so it seemed. In those days we used hand beaters. You know, those little whirly bird beaters with a handle on the side.
A favorite recipe with the drizzled flavors involves combining about a dozen egg whites with water, some flavoring (e.g. fruit extracts) with cream of tartar and beating the mixture continuously while gradually introducing sugar and beating until the mixture forms moderately stiff peaks (or your arm falls off if you're using one of those hand beaters) :> ) before introducing the flour. Then it's just a matter of gently transferring the batter to a bunt pan or other tube pan (I use a spatula) and handling it carefully to load into a moderate oven.
Any recipe for angel food cake can be adapted to the use of fruit extracts in the batter. Drizzling fruit syrups over the cake after it's baked is, IMO, undesirable. A light and tender cake soaking up syrup seems a waste of what might otherwise be an ethereal experience.
A syrup served with the plating (as a drizzle on the plate that could be combined with the cake bite for bite as the guest might enjoy) is another story.