Angel Food Cake With Lemon Curd
Yield: 1 10-inch cake, 2 cups lemon curd
  • For the angel food cake:
  • 5 ounces bleached cake flour (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons; 140g)
  • 15 ounces cold egg whites (2 cups; 425g) from 12 large eggs
  • 15 ounces granulated sugar (2 cups; 425g)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 tablespoons freshly-squeezed lemon juice, from 1 small lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • For the lemon curd:
  • 2 whole eggs plus 8 egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 7 ounces (1 cup) granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, from about 6 lemons
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, at room temperature
  • For serving:
  • 2-3 pints berries
  1. Bake the angel food cake: Adjust oven rack to the middle position. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Sift the cake flour.
  2. Add the egg whites, sugar, vanilla, and almond extract to the bowl of a stand mixer fit with the whisk attachment. Mix on low (speed 1 on a KitchenAid) until the egg whites have loosened up. Increase the speed to medium-low (speed 4), and whip for 3 minutes, the egg whites should be dense and dark. With the mixer running, add the lemon juice and salt. Increase the speed to medium (speed 6), and whip for 3 minutes, or until the meringue is thin and foamy. Increase the speed to medium-high (speed 8), and whip for 2-4 minutes, or until the meringue is thick, glossy, and the whisk leaves a pattern behind as it beats. The meringue should be thin enough that it drips off the beater when lifted but that it mounds up like soft serve (just shy of soft peaks).
  3. Sprinkle the sifted cake flour on top of the batter, then stir with a silicone spatula to roughly combine. Switch to a folding motion, and fold until no pockets of flour remain.
  4. Scrape the batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan with a removable bottom. If you see any remaining pockets of flour, pause to mix them in. Smooth the top of the batter and bake until the cake is puffed up, deep-golden-brown, and firm (it should spring back when touched), about 45-55 minutes. The internal temperature should reach 206°F (if you don't have an instant-read thermometer, test with a toothpick or cake tester to make sure that the inside of the cake is dry).
  5. Invert the cake onto its stilts and cool upside down until completely cooled, at least 2 hours.
  6. Make the lemon curd: Meanwhile, add the eggs, sugar, and lemon juice to a heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk together to combine. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until it has jelled up slightly and coats the back of a spoon. Take the pot off of the heat and add the cubed butter, one cube at a time, whisking until they have melted completely.
  7. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer into whatever container you plan to store it in, and cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly onto the surface of the curd so that it doesn't form a skin. Chill for at least 2 hours.
  8. Serve the cake: Run a large offset spatula between the cake and the cake pan both around the outside and inside of the tube insert. Remove the tube insert, then use the offset spatula to loosen the cake from the bottom of the pan. Invert the cake onto a serving plate and remove the bottom of the pan. Slice with a very-sharp serrated bread knife using a sawing motion. Serve with lemon curd and berries.
Like with all baking recipes, but especially here, I highly recommend measuring by weight rather than volume. This proves especially useful when measuring the egg whites; you might find, as I did, that you need 13 egg whites, not 12, to yield 15 ounces. Do not use unbleached cake flour, the cake will not rise properly. Do not be tempted to use a nonstick tube pan, the cake will not rise properly, and may slide out once inverted to cool, compressing the cake. Serve with whatever sort of berries look best at the market (or your favorite type).
Recipe by A Modest Feast at