Yield: 10 SERVINGS
Prep time: 15 MIN
Cook time: 55 MIN
Total time: 1H 10MIN
What makes this American Sponge Cake so unique is its spongy texture that is so wonderfully light and moist. It has a sweet flavor and since it does not contain solid fat, it is the ideal cake for those watching their fat intake. This cake can be eaten plain, but my favorite way is with fresh fruit (or fruit sauces) and a dollop of whipped cream
6 large eggs, separated, room temperature
1 cup (100 grams) cake flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (200 grams) granulated white sugar, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons water
Zest of a lemon or orange (outer skin)
3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) and place rack in center of oven. Have ready an ungreased two-piece 10 inch (25 cm) tube pan.
2. Mix the sifted flour with the baking powder and salt. Set aside.
3. Place the egg yolks and 2/3 cup (135 g) of the sugar in the bowl of your electric mixer with the paddle attachment (or use a hand mixer). Beat on high speed until they are thick, fluffy and light-colored (when you slowly raise the beater the batter will fall back into the bowl in a slow ribbon).
4. Beat in the vanilla extract, water, and lemon zest. Set aside.
5. In a clean bowl, with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and continue beating until soft peaks form. Gradually add the 1/3 cup (65 g) of sugar and continue beating until the egg whites are shiny and just form stiff peaks.
6. Next, sift the flour mixture over the beaten egg yolks (about one-third of the flour mixture at a time) and gently but quickly fold (with a wire whisk or rubber spatula) the flour into the egg yolk batter. Then gently fold a little of the beaten egg whites into the batter to lighten it, and then add the rest of the whites, folding just until incorporated. (Do not over mix the batter or it will deflate.).
7. Pour the batter into the tube pan, smoothing the top.
8. Bake in preheated oven for 28 – 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
9. Remove from the oven and immediately invert the pan and suspend it by placing the inner tube on the top of a flat-topped glass or bowl. Allow the cake to cool completely before unmolding (about one hour).
10. Run a flat metal spatula or sharp knife around the inside of the pan and then remove the center core of the pan.
11. Invert the cake onto a greased wire rack. The cake can be served plain with a dusting of powdered sugar or with fresh fruit and softly whipped cream.