5 to 6 eggs, separated (separate eggs when cold, then cover and let come to room temperature, about 20 minutes maximum)
1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup superfine sugar, divided
3 tablespoons water, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla, other extract or flavoring
1/8 to 1/2 teaspoon salt, optional
1 cup sifted, all-purpose flour (sift, then measure)
In large mixing bowl at high speed, beat egg whites with cream of tartar until foamy. Add half of the sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating constantly until sugar is dissolved and whites are glossy and stand in soft peaks. Rub just a bit of meringue between thumb and forefinger to feel if sugar has dissolved.
In small mixing bowl at high speed, beat egg yolks until thick and lemon-colored, about 3 to 5 minutes. Gradually beat in remaining sugar, water, vanilla and salt (if desired) until blended.
With a sifter or sprinkle flour with a sieve over whites. Add beaten yolk mixture. Gently, but thoroughly, fold yolk mixture and flour into whites. Pour into ungreased 9 x 3-inch tube or angel food pan. Gently cut through batter with metal spatula or knife to get air bubbles out and to spread evenly.
Bake in preheated 325 degrees F to 350 degrees F (160 degrees C to 180 degrees C) oven until top springs back when lightly touched with finger and cake begins to pull away from sides of pan, about 35 to 45 minutes. Invert cake in pan on funnel or bottleneck. Cool completely, about 1-1/2 hours. With narrow spatula or knife, loosen cake from pan. Gently shake onto serving plate.
Makes 12 servings.
Source: American Egg Board
Date: July 21, 2004