St. Michael and All Angels Day celebration, also known as Michaelmas, begins tonight! It's a special occasion in the Christian calendar dedicated to honoring St. Michael, the captain of the heavenly host, and all other angels.
But you might be wondering, how does one celebrate such a day? Well, one delightful way to mark this occasion in your home is by baking an Angel Food Cake. The name says it all plus the light and airy texture of an Angel Food Cake perfectly symbolizes the ethereal and heavenly nature of these celestial beings. It's a sweet and meaningful way to pay tribute to St. Michael, who led the heavenly host against the forces of darkness. So, let's whip up this heavenly dessert and savor each bite in honor of the angels and all that they do for God's holy purposes.
Angel Food Cake
1 1/2 cups plus 1 Tablespoon sugar
1 cup cake flour (no cake flour? see note at end of the recipe for a substitution)
12 egg whites, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Preheat oven to 325ºF. Do NOT grease the angel food cake pan. Put sugar in a food processor and pulse about 15 times until the sugar granules are finer. Sift flour with 3/4 cup of the sugar. Set aside. In a large bowl, use the whisk attachment to whip egg whites, extracts, and salt until it becomes a bit frothy. Add cream of tartar and whip until the mixture forms soft peaks. Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, while the mixer is running. Continue beating until the mixture is glossy, smooth, and holds a stiff peak. In three additions, sift the flour/sugar mixture over the top of the beaten egg whites and carefully fold. Once incorporated, spoon batter into the pan. Run a knife or a thin spatula through the batter to break up any air pockets. Smooth the top with the back of a spoon. Bake for 35–40 minutes, or until the top is lightly golden and cracked, and the cake bounces bake when lightly touched. Cool the cake upside-down in the pan, using a bottle in the center, the attached feet that are part of some pans, or handles balanced on something sturdy. Let cake cool completely, about 2 hours. Run a knife along the edge and center tube of the cake. Invert onto a cake plate and give the cake a few good shakes. If the cake does not release, repeat the steps. Cut with a serrated knife and serve with whipped topping.
Cake Flour Substitution
For 1 cup of cake flour, sift together 14 Tablespoons of all-purpose flour with 2 Tablespoons of cornstarch. Sift one more time.