Vanilla Chiffon Cake

A beautifully light and airy cake!  Perfect for any occasion.

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Vanilla Chiffon Cake

Yields:  Two 9-inch round cakes

Total Time:  2 hours (includes cooling time)

Prep Time:  20 min

Cook Time:  10 min

 

Ingredients

  • 4 large egg whites, room temperature
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar
  • 6 oz. granulated sugar (approximately ¾ cup), divided
  • 2 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 2 oz. vegetable oil
  • 4 oz. milk, room temperature
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 4 oz. cake flour (approximately 1 cup)
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder

 

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and 4 oz. sugar until lightened in color.  Whisk in the oil, milk, and vanilla extract.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy.  Gradually add in the remaining 2 oz. sugar and beat until stiff peaks form on high speed; reserve while the batter is finished.
  4. Sift the flour, salt, and baking powder into the egg yolk mixture.  Whisk until just combined, being careful not to overmix.
  5. Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the batter until almost incorporated.  Add the remaining egg whites and fold until just combined.
  6. Pour the batter into 2 ungreased 9-inch round pans and bake for 10-12 minutes.  (10.5 oz. batter in each pan)
  7. Cool upside down for 1 ½ hours.  I prop the edges of the pan on top of jars.
  8. Run a knife along the edges of the pan.  Place the pan on a cake platter and tap on the bottom of the pan to release the cake.

Chiffon cake is a cross between an angel food cake and a sponge cake.  This cake is great for those with fillings or toppings that need to be refrigerated.  Also a great option for ice cream cakes – butter based cakes often dry out in the refrigerator, while chiffon cakes stay nice and soft.

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The ingredients for this great cake are: cake flour, vegetable oil, milk, granulated sugar, egg whites & yolks (separated), vanilla extract, baking powder, salt, and cream of tartar.

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Add 2 egg yolks to a bowl with 4 oz. of the granulated sugar.

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Whisk these together until lightened in color.

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Next up is the oil, milk, and vanilla extract.

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Whisk this until well combined.

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In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add 4 egg whites and cream of tartar.  Cream of tartar helps stabilize the egg whites, so they won’t collapse after they have been beaten.

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Beat this until foamy.

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Then gradually add in the remaining sugar.

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Beat this on high until stiff peaks form.

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Stiff peaks are formed when the whisk is lifted out and the egg whites stand up straight.  Stiff peaks are essential to this recipe, as they provide structure and lightness.

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Lovely, fluffy egg whites!  Reserve this while we finish up the batter.

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Sift the cake flour, salt, and baking powder into the egg yolk mixture.

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Lightening up the flour mixture will also help lighten up the cake.

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Whisk this until just combined.

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Fold in 1/3 of the whipped egg whites.

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To fold, put the blade of the spatula down through the center, scraping the blade from the bottom up along the sides, gently flipping the mixture over on top.

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Rotate the bowl a quarter-turn and repeat until the egg whites are mostly incorporated.

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Add the remaining egg whites…

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And fold these in until just combined.

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Pour the batter into 2 ungreased 9-inch round pans.  Chiffon cake is similar to angel food cake and needs to cling to the sides of the pan as it bakes.

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Smooth out the tops and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 10 minutes.  Insert a toothpick in the center of the cake to check for doneness.

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Like angel food cakes, chiffon cakes need to be cooled upside down.  This prevents the cake from collapsing on itself as it cools – instead it will stretch out.  I prop the edges on glass jars.

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Let these cakes cool completely for 1.5 hours, before flipping right side up.

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To remove, run a knife along the edges of the pan.

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Then flip upside down again and tap along the bottom of the pan to release the cake.

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Ta-da!

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Wrap in plastic wrap and store at room temperature until ready to frost.  I like to use a lighter frosting, like whipped cream, on chiffon cakes.  Heavy frosting, like buttercream, tends to weigh the cake down because it is so light.

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I hope you enjoy this light, airy cake of wonderfulness!

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