Angel Food Cup Cakes
One of the few culinary experiences to allude me for any real amount of time has been the lucid Angel Food. This food of the gods is completely fat free and so deliciously light and fluffy it seems almost impossible to make. It’s really not as hard as all the big time chefs make it sound.
If you look up a recipe for Angel Food Cake on the internet you’re going to find lots and lots of ‘unbreakable’ rules. Personally I think someone just made these up. It really doesn’t take exact measurements, an electric mixer, or a tube pan. It’s really easy and tastes great.
First off let’s take a look at the recipe.
- 7/8 cup sugar
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup cake flour
- 6 egg whites (room temperature)
- 1/6 cup warm water
- 1/2 tsp of your favorite extract
- 3/4 tsp cream of tartar
- Large mixing bowl
- Muffin tin
- Toaster oven
Some of these are a little unconventional measurements. If you have to estimate a little bit, don’t worry. Remember: before they had recipes, they didn’t have recipes.
Preheat oven (or toaster oven) to 350 degrees.
If you have a food processor, process the sugar for 2 minutes on high. Then separate it into two roughly equal parts. If you don’t have a food processor, don’t worry about it. Mix the flour with half the sugar and the salt.
In a large bowl mix the warm water, extract and the room temperature egg whites. It is imperative that not a single spec of yellow is in the white. Even one little drop will drastically lower your bubble making capacity. This is the fun part. Grab your whisk and beat the heck out of the mixture.
When you have a thick, but still very viscous solution start adding the sugar that you set aside at the beginning. Do this very slowly while continuing to whisk vigorously (it’s best to get a friend to help). When all the sugar is added continue to beat until you reach medium peaks.
Slowly fold in the dry ingredients. Dust the top of the foam, then fold it over with a spatula. A homogeneous solution is not necessary, and actually not preferred. Think of it as flour suspended in an eggy foam.
Carefully divvy the batter into a muffin tin and bake until golden brown. A muffin tin is required. The batter “crawls up” the walls of its container, and muffins give you the surface area ratio needed for them to rise without using a tube pan. This will probably take about 10 minutes, but you can never be sure. Best to go with appearances.
Let your muffins cool for about 5-10 minutes (if you can wait that long) and enjoy. They go well with fruity or chocolate dipping sauce. Yields 4 dozen mini muffins.