created: 2006-11-02 07:06:29
servings: 8 to 10
This basic cake batter is excellent....but you must not stint on the beating!
1 quarter pound butter scant 1 cup of sugar (2/3 to 3/4 cup) 1/2 tsp salt 1-1/2 tsp vanilla 1/2 tsp cardamom 2 tsp baking powder 4 eggs, separated scant 2 cups of flour Use some sour milk, milk or water or other liquid so that the white-of-egg can be easily folded into this mixture. In a stand-mixer, cream together butter and sugar until soft and fluffy. (Great grandmother Oma didn't have a 'stand-mixer'; what she did have was a will to make great cake. So she beat it like a demon.....350 strokes by hand) Add salt and baking powder Add the yolks-of-egg, one at a time, until incorporated. Add the vanilla (add cardamom for superior white cake) Add the flour by spoonfuls and continue beating. And continue beating and then beat some more.... In another bowl, whip the four eggwhites until foamy and then a bit more until soft peaks just form....Do not over beat the white-of-egg! You must now judge the relative consistancy of the batter with an eye to the difficulty of folding soft eggwhites into thick batter. The batter cannot be stiff! (ie you must add liquid to the flour-butter-sugar mixture in order to facilitate the folding in of the eggwhites. So mix a little liquid to the batter) Now, pour the batter into the bowl containing the white-of-egg and incorporate the both by hand ---'folding'; use a rubber-tongue or large spoon made for the purpose.... Scrape the batter into a 10 inch springform pan (or into a couple of 'cake-pans') and put onto the middle shelf of a moderate (350) oven for 50-65 minutes. Notes: A slower oven is better that a hot oven...the springform pan is an improvement over the old layer cake pan with its resulting 4 crusts... Cool, cut into layers and then fill with jam, liquours or custard, and frost with whipped cream, buttercream.... Leave out the cardamom if you want to make a chocolate cake... and: Add 3 oz of baking chocolate, melted, Add 1/4 cup cocoa (you might want to adjust the sugar to compensate for the bitter chocolate, maybe not) For Mocha cake, substitute espresso or strong coffee for the liquid and add 1/4 cup of cocoa powder to the batter. Cakes made with whipped cream or custard and soaked w/apricot or cherry brandy are much better served the next day.... Ben B.