Brown Sugar Angel Food Cake

I took the day off this past Sunday from blogging our dinner menu in order to spend a wonderful Mother's day with my family, but I didn't take the day off from cooking.  It was a delicious dinner that ended with this dessert that conjured up memories of my childhood and my own mother.

One of mom's desserts that was always well received consisted of a bowl of fresh summer strawberries, a bowl of sour cream, and a third bowl of light brown sugar.  Pulling back the foliage and holding the stem end of the berries, we would dip the whole berry into the sour cream, then roll it into the brown sugar.  Mmmm... I'm sure many of you know just what I'm talking about.

Now take that idea and put a little elbow grease into the concept and you have this dinner finale (or afternoon hand held snack☺).

The original recipe hits the mark on flavor, but the form of stabilizer was lacking (trust me, I have tried it without out it; a.k.a cue the dogs to clean up the kitchen fail).  I used cream of tartar along with the lemon juice to ensure a tall and fluffy cake.

Printable Recipe

Brown Sugar Angel Food Cake
serves 8-10

1 cup cake flour
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
12 extra large egg whites, at room temperature for 30 minutes
1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar

Lightly sweetened whipped crème fraîche
Sliced fresh strawberries

Preheat the oven to 350º F.

In a medium bowl sift together the flour, 3/4 cup of the brown sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt; set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites with the lemon juice, vanilla, cream of tartar, and remaining salt on medium-high speed until they just hold soft peaks.  Increase the speed to high and add remaining 3/4 cup of brown sugar by tablespoons, beating until whites hold stiff glossy peaks, 3 to 5 minutes longer.

Transfer mixture to a large bowl to facilitate folding.  Sift flour mixture over whites and fold in gently but thoroughly with a large rubber spatula.

Spoon batter into an ungreased tube pan with removeable bottom, or line the bottom of a tube pan with a ring of parchment paper; smoothing the top.  Run the spatula or a knife through the batter once to eliminate any air bubbles.

Bake until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean, about 40-45 minutes.  Remove from the oven and immediately invert the pan on its "legs" or over the neck of a wine bottle.  Cool cake completely upside down for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Turn the pan right side up.  Run a knife around the edge and center of the pan.  Invert or release the cake if using a removeable bottom, then reinvert onto a plate.  (Cake can be baked, cooled, and unmolded 1 day ahead and kept well wrapped in plastic or foil at room temperature.)  Serve with sweetened whipped crème fraîche, and sliced fresh berries.  Enjoy!

Source: Adapted from Gourmet: Grilling, 2011

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