My parents had a large freezer in the basement of our family home. I wouldn't open that freezer door often. The frozen foods I was interested in, like ice cream, were kept in the refrigerator-freezer in our kitchen. When I did need to open the door of that basement freezer, I would always see glass canning jars with zinc lid tops that were lined up on the freezer shelves, and filled with frozen egg whites. Soon enough, there would be a cake and/or meringue made for a nightly dessert using some of those saved whites.
I guess my freezer is very similar to that of my mother's, many years ago. At any given time I will have at least 5 jars of egg whites waiting for inspiration on my end. The most recent creation from my defrosted egg whites was this Chocolate Chip-Angel Food Cake with Bittersweet Ganache. I have yet to eat a piece (I over-did it a bit, licking clean the beaters and bowls when making the cake and ganache, and lost my appetite for anything sweet), but my husband did have a large slice and after finishing it off said, "I feel like I have just eaten something very healthy". Hmm... I don't know about that; angel food cakes are fat free and a little bittersweet chocolate each day is considered a good thing. Dessert... healthy... sure... why not! Sounds good to me!
Chocolate Chip - Angel Food Cake with Bittersweet
• recipe from Martha Stewart Living •
MAKES ONE 10-INCH CAKE
For the cake:
• 1 1/4 cups cake flour
• 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar, divided in half
• 14 large egg whites (1 1/2 cups), at room temperature
• 1 1/4 teaspoons cream of tartar
• 1/2 cup coarsely grated bittersweet chocolate (I used bittersweet baking chips and pulsed in food processor)
For the ganache:
• 1/2 cup buttermilk
• 1 1/2 cups chopped bittersweet chocolate
1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Sift flour into a mixing bowl, then resift the flour with 3/4 cup sugar.
2. In a clean metal bowl, beat egg whites with an electric mixer until frothy. Add cream of tartar; beat until whites have tripled in size. Slowly add remaining sugar and beat until firm and glossy.
3. Transfer egg whites to a large bowl. Gently fold in the flour mixture in three additions by sifting each addition onto the egg whites, and folding from the bottom of the bowl. Use fewest strokes possible. Fold in the grated chocolate. Pour batter into a 10-inch angel food cake pan, and run a knife or long wooden skewer through the center of the batter to release any air bubbles. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until the top becomes golden brown.
4. Invert the pan over the neck of a bottle, and cool for about 1 hour. Loosen the cake from the pan with a long, flexible knife, and turn the cake over onto a plate or cake stand.
5. Make the ganache by heating buttermilk over a low flame. When very warm, remove from the heat and add the chopped chocolate, stirring slowly until it has all melted. Use a small whisk and beat to smooth the mixture. Spread ganache over the top and around the sides of the cooled cake. Also good without the ganache and a dusting of confectioners' sugar.
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