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Sunday, November 6, 2011

Champion Sponge Cake

I've never made sponge cake before, so I learned something new with this recipe. It was slightly difficult, so I wouldn't recommend it to someone who doesn't bake. The book says it would be "a lovely addition to any buffet or luncheon" and I would have to agree. We found this recipe in the "Country Fair Cookbook: Every Recipe a Blue Ribbon Winner" edited by Elise W. Manning. Jason got this cookbook from PaperBackSwap.com and it ended up being a vintage book with recipes from the 70's. This particular recipe was on page 99.

Here is the ingredient list:

1 1/4 cup sifted flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 eggs, separated
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
Pineapple Frosting (down below...)

*note: it is best that all of your ingredients are at room temperature


The recipe:

Sift together the flour, 1 cup of sugar, baking powder and salt. You can do this several times till it's incorporated together.








Beat your egg whites at high speed until frothy. I did this in my stand mixer.





Then add the cream of tartar and gradually add the 1/2 cup of sugar, beating until stiff but not dry peaks form. It doesn't say what speed to do this on so I continued to do it on high speed.






Combine the egg yolks, water, vanilla and dry ingredients (I used a different bowl and a hand mixer because I only have 1 bowl for my mixer right now). Beat at medium high speed until thick and lemon-colored (about 4 minutes). It gets really thick too...






Gradually fold the egg yolk mixture into the egg whites. It's really hard to get a picture of this... If you don't know what it means to "fold," I suggest looking it up. It is important that this step is done right or the cake will not turn out right.





Pour the batter into a UN-greased 10" tube pan. I only have a fluted tube pan, it worked out well enough but if you want it to be prettier I would use an non-fluted tube pan.






Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until the cake tests done (toothpick method). In my oven it was right on at 45 minutes. Now, the recipe says when you take the pan out of the oven it has to be inverted on a funnel or bottle to cool. I have no idea why this has to be done, but I did it anyway...





Let the cake completely cool in the pan before you remove it, about 2 hours or so. I kinda panicked on this step and completely forgot to take a picture. I freaked out because the cake wasn't coming out of the pan and I thought that the recipe was wrong about greasing the pan. I decided to run a knife around the edges and see if I could get it out. That is a step that I think the recipe left out because after I did that the cake fell right out. The crust stayed in the pan, but I think it's supposed to. Have you ever seen brown sponge cake? Sorry I forgot a picture....

The recipe then says to frost the sides and edges with Pineapple Frosting. I didn't do that either. I was just making it for us and if I frosted it the cake would have gotten soggy. I have a picture of how I serve it though below.

Here's what's in the Pineapple Frostingg:

1/4 cup of butter (or margarine)
1/4 cup of shortening
3 cups sifted confectioners ssugar
1 (8 1/2 ounce) can of crushed pineapple, drained well
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind/zest






Here's what you do:

Cream together the butter and shortening.





Gradually add the confectioners sugar and beat until light and fluffy. I'm not sure if I did something wrong but it turned out to be the texture of fluffy snow.




Stir in the can of crushed pineapple, salt, vanilla and lemon.





I don't think I drained the pineapple well enough because it was really moist and it separated a touch, but it was fine. Since I didn't frost the cake I put it in a container to use when I have a piece of cake.

Since the cake was just for us I just slice it and put a dab of frosting with it.


Like I said earlier, if you don't bake often this recipe will be fairly difficult. Hopefully this break down will help though. It was well worth the trouble. I will definitely think of this cake the next time I need to bring something to an event.



Happy eating!

~Carson~

2 comments:

  1. Hey Carson, Here are a couple tricks when dealing with sponge cakes.

    (First, did you use Cake flour or AP, cause it WILL effect the final result of the cake)

    1. Mix the batter first using the stand mixer, then transfer to a bowl and clean and dry your mixing bowl really well, or your egg whites will break.
    2. Using the stand mixer, whip your eggs whites until they form soft peaks, THEN add the sugar in a stream on high speed followed by the cream of tartar. Whip until firm moist peaks are formed.
    3. Then in about 3 incriments, fold the egg whites (essentially its a meringue) into the cake batter.
    4. Immediately pour into an ungreased cake pan and bake. Allow to fully cool and then you will have to assist with getting it to unstick from the sides of the pan.

    This is just a slightly easier breakdown of how it can be done. However, if you get paranoid that the cake WILL stick you can spray the pan with cooking spray and it wont effect the out come of you cake.

    Hope this helps some!

    - Your brother

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  2. We follow the recipe as it is given and use the ingredients it calls for. Not all of us are trained chefs ;)

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