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Lemon Curd-Filled Angel Food Cake

Yield Makes 12 servings
Prep: 30 min.; Bake: 34 min.; Cool: 1 hr., 30 min.; Chill: 1 hr. An angel food cake pan looks similar to a traditional tube pan, but it has a removable bottom and three or four metal "feet" attached to the top rim. The feet allow the pan to be inverted while cooling, which yields a light and fluffy cake texture. Be sure to let the cake cool completely (1 1/2 hours) before cutting horizontally into three equal rounds.

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups plus 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon light rum
  • 1/4 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1 3/4 cups egg whites (about 13 to 15 eggs)
  • 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • Lemon Curd Filling
  • Cream Cheese Frosting
  • Garnishes: lemon slices, lavender sprigs

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 375º. Sift together sugar, flour, and salt in a bowl. Combine lemon juice, vanilla extract, rum, and orange extract.

  2. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar at high speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until stiff peaks form; gently transfer egg white mixture to a large bowl.

  3. Gradually fold in sugar mixture with a large spatula, 1/3 cup at a time, folding just until blended after each addition. Fold in lemon juice mixture.

  4. Spoon batter into an ungreased 10-inch angel food pan with feet.

  5. Bake at 375º for 34 to 38 minutes or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Invert cake, and let cool in pan 1 hour. Remove cake from pan to a wire rack, and let cool completely (about 30 minutes). Cut cake horizontally into 3 equal rounds.

  6. Spread Lemon Curd Filling between layers, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Cover and chill 1 hour.

  7. Spread Cream Cheese Frosting on top and sides of cake. Garnish, if desired.

Watts Grocery, Durham, North Carolina