Chocolate-Kissed Angel Food Cake
Adapted from Ina Garten
1 1/3 cups cake flour (make your own if needed)
2 cups sugar, divided
1 1/2 cups egg whites, room temperature (from 10-12 eggs)
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 to 1/2 cup grated semisweet chocolate, plus extra for garnish (grate a chocolate bar with a cheese grater or Microplane)
powdered sugar, for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Sift together flour and 1/2 cup of the sugar. Sift the same flour/sugar mix one more time and set aside.
Using an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment on high speed (or using your own arms and a whisk) beat egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar together in the largest bowl you have until mixture just barely reaches the firm peaks stage (about one minute).
Slowly add the remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar with mixer on medium speed. Return to high speed and beat for a few more minutes until mixture is billowy and shiny. (Admire how pretty it is!)
Whisk in the vanilla.
Sift 1/4 of the flour mixture over the egg mixture and fold it in gently with a rubber spatula. (See the link on the side of the page for a good demonstration of proper folding technique.) Fold in the rest of the flour mixture in three parts, sifting flour prior to addition.
Fold in the grated chocolate.
Pour the batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan. Use your spatula to smooth the top.
Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until cake will spring back after a gentle touch.
Remove cake from oven and invert pan on cooling rack. (If your pan does not have those helpful prongs to keep your cake elevated, place the pan upside down on top of a bottle with a long neck like a wine bottle.)
When the cake is cool, gently run a knife along the sides of the cake and lift the center portion of the tube pan out of the sides. Run a knife along the bottom of the cake to separate it from the base of the pan. Invert cake and remove pan base.
Dust top with chocolate shavings and powdered sugar. Serve.
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