Being gluten-free doesn't mean that we are stuck eating cardboard tasting desserts. I've been on a quest to find a sponge cake recipe that would rock my world. I was never able to make a regular sponge cake very well, so I just figured this wouldn't be any different. But since I'm not a quitter, I thought I would give this one a go. I was pleasantly surprised to have created a very tasty, spongy cake that would rival any other.
1 1/2 c. confectioner's sugar
1 c. gluten free cake flour *
1/2 tsp xanthan gum - omit if your mix already contains this
1/2 tsp salt
1 3/4 c egg whites (about 12 eggs) at room temperature
1/3 c. warm water
1 1/2 tsp cream of tarter
1/4 tsp almond extract (can substitute vanilla extract)
Sliced strawberries and whipped cream, for serving
Preheat oven to 350 degree. You will need a 10" tube pan. Set aside.
A sifter is essential for the next part. Sift 3/4 c. of the confectioner's sugar, flour, and xanthan gum into a bowl. Sift 3 more times. This is an essential part of the recipe. Sift a total of 4 times.
To make the meringue, in a stand mixer bowl with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites, warm water, cream of tartar, and almond extract on medium high speed. Gradually add remaining 3/4 c. of confectioner's sugar in 3-4 batches until soft peaks form.
In four batches, add the sifted flour mixture to the meringue, gently folding it into the meringue with a spatula. Work quickly, but carefully. so as to not deflate the meringue. Carefully transfer the batter into the ungreased tube pan. Carefully run a knife in a zig zag manner through the batter to release any air bubbles that may be trapped. Smooth the batter with the knife. The pan will be very full.
Place the pan on a center rack in the pre-heated oven. Bake until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean and the top is lightly browned and the top springs back when touched. Bake for about 35 minutes.
When the cake is done, remove from the oven and invert over a long necked bottle if your pan doesn't have legs to elevate the pan while inverted.Do this for 1 hour. Coax the cake from the sides of the pan with a butter knife or spatula and release from pan and finish cooling on a wire rack. Slice with a serrated knife by moving in one direction and not in a sawing motion. Serve with strawberries and whipped cream.
*The flour mixture I used was the Four Flour mixture from the Gluten Free Gourmet Dessert cookbook. You can buy pre-mixed cake flours for gluten free baking. Pamela's makes an excellent mix for most baking needs.
Recipe is by Nicole Hunn of Gluten-Free on a Shoestring