Healthy Dessert Option: Chocolate Almond Angel Food Cake

This comes from The Get With the Program Guide to Good Eating by Bob Greene.

This luscious cake is as light as a feather and full of chocolate flavor – and contains almost no fat.  Make sure that your bowl and beaters are absolutely clean and grease-free and there’s not a speck of yolk in your egg whites; fold the whites gently into the flour mixture to make sure you get maximum volume.  Serve the cake with raspberry sauce , fresh fruit of your choice, or a small scoop of carmel-flavored frozen yogurt.

Makes one 10-inch cake.

3/4 cup cake flour

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)

pinch of salt

1 cup sugar

12 egg whites, at room temperature

1 tsp cream of tartar

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/3 bup blanched toasted almonds, finely chopped

optional toppings as listed above

Posistion the oven rack in the lower third of the oven.  Preheat the oven to 350.  Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, salt, and 1/4 cup of the sugar and set aside.  In a clean, dry bowl of an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until foamy.  Add the cream of tartar, and vanilla extract and continue to beat at high speed, gradually adding the remaining 3/4 cup sugar.  Beat just until stiff peaks form; do not overbeat, or the whites will become grainy.  Sift 1/4 of the flour mixture over the beaten egg whites and gently fold it into the whites with a rubber spatula.  Alternately fold in the almonds and the remaining flour mixture in small batches, until everything is just incorporated.  Pour the batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan, run a spatula through the mixture to emove any air pockets, and smooth the top.  Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.  Remove the cake from the oven and invert the pan over an upended funnel or bottle.  Allow the cake to cool completely, about 1 hour.  Run a knife around the edges of the pan and the tube to loosen the cake and turn it into a serving platter. 

Optional Raspberry Sauce Recipe

This sauce makes a great topping for frozen yogurt or fresh berries, and really dresses up the Chocolate Almond Angel Food Cake.  It’s just as good made with frozen unsweetened raspberries as it is with fresh, which means it’s a year-round treat.  The sauce will keep, tightly covered, for five days in the refrigerator.

Makes about 2 cups

3 cups fresh raspberries or 1 package thawed, unsweetened frozen raspberries

1/3 cup sugar

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tbsp orange liqueur or port wine (optional)

In a blender, puree the raspberries, sugar, lemon juice, and liqueur, if desired.  Strain the sauce through a fine-mesh sieve to remove any seeds.  Store in the refrigerator until needed.

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