Happy New Year, everyone! I hope you had a great time over the holidays. Mine were spent relaxing, eating and catching up with a whole lot of family, which is my favorite way to celebrate (really!).
I thought I’d kick off 2012 with putting something a little on the lighter side on the panini maker – Grilled Angel Food Cake with Lemon Curd. Something really cool happens when you grill angel food cake: the outside gets ever-so-gently crisped and practically dissolves on your tongue like cotton candy. It transforms an otherwise average, store-bought cake into something far more appealing…especially when you top it with some sweet-tart homemade lemon curd.
Truth be told, I did plan to bake my own angel food cake. I made two attempts, actually. Both attempts didn’t quite work out – the first time I omitted a step and the second time I was so cautious about overstirring the egg whites that I actually didn’t mix it well enough. For those who are keeping track, that was a total of 20 egg white casualties. On the positive side, I did end up with plenty of egg yolks to make this fabulous lemon curd. I still have 15 more yolks on hand…I’m entertaining ideas for ways to use them!
Grilled Angel Food Cake with Lemon Curd
Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: 30 minutes | Total time: 40 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
- 5 egg yolks
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons fine lemon zest (from about 2 lemons)
- 1/3 cup lemon juice (from 1 1/2-2 lemons)
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
- 8 1-inch slices angel food cake, store-bought or homemade*
- 1/2 pint fresh raspberries
- Fill a medium saucepan with an inch of water and bring it to a simmer over medium high heat (if you have a double-boiler, heat an inch of water in the lower saucepan).
- Meanwhile, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar in a medium heat-proof bowl (or the upper saucepan of your double-boiler) until it’s smooth. Whisk in the lemon juice and zest until the mixture is smooth.
- Once the water is simmering turn down the heat to low and place the bowl on top of the saucepan; the bowl should not touch the water (if you’re using a double-boiler, assemble the upper and lower saucepans). Whisk the egg mixture continually until it thickens, about 15 minutes. It should be thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in each cube of butter one at a time, allowing each addition to melt before adding the next. Transfer the curd to a bowl. If you’re not ready to serve the curd immediately, press a layer of plastic wrap on the surface of the curd to prevent a skin from forming and chill it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use it.
- Preheat the panini grill to high heat.
- In batches, add the angel food cake slices to the grill. If your grill allows you to adjust the height of the upper plate: Close the lid so that the upper plate is resting on the cake without pressing it. Grill the cake slices until they’re toasted with grill marks, about a minute. Alternatively, you can leave the grill open and grill the cake slices for about 90 seconds per side.
- Serve the grilled angel food cake with a few spoonfuls of lemon curd and fresh raspberries.
* If you bake your own angel food cake from scratch, save the yolks to make the lemon curd.