Got Egg Whites?: Lime Angel Food Cake with Lime Glaze and Pistachios

After I made a double batch of banana pudding for Mardi Gras, I had an extra 10 egg whites on hand, and angel food cake seemed like the natural choice to use them up. I have a reliable recipe that I love -- "Espresso chocolate chip angel food cake" from Four-Star Desserts by Emily Luchetti. But on a whim, I thought I'd look around to see if there might be another angel food cake recipe I might want to try. A quick search on turned up a recipe for "Lime Angel Food Cake with Lime Glaze and Pistachios," by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito. As Lewis and Poliafito are the authors of two of my favorite cookbooks -- Baked and Baked Explorations -- I was eager to give the recipe a try.

The cake recipe calls for egg whites, vanilla, lime zest, cream of tartar, sugar, cake flour, and salt. The recipe is quite specific that you should not grease your angel food pan and you should not use a non-stick pan. This is because the cake is cooled upside down, and you don't want the cake to fall out of the pan while it's cooling. The only angel food pan I have is non-stick, and I went ahead to use it. I wasn't too concerned; after all, non-stick pans are usually not completely "non-stick" per se, but more like "less-stick." The non-stick pan worked out just fine. I was able to cool my cake upside down without a problem, and I still had to run a knife around the cake to release it from the pan after it was cool.

After the cake is cooled, you brush on a syrup of sugar dissolved in lime juice, and then sprinkle on chopped pistachios, which stick to the glaze. This was a pretty messy process (since you have to press the pistachios into the cake so that they stick to the syrup, especially on the sides), and in the future, I would probably apply the syrup and pistachios to only one section of the cake at a time, so that the remaining cake stayed dry and easier to handle without getting the sticky syrup all over my hands. The final step is to drizzle on a glaze of powdered sugar mixed with lime juice.

This angel food cake had the perfect texture -- fluffy and moist, without being wet or sticky. The lime zest in the batter gave the cake a lovely light lime flavor, and the crust of the cake with the lime syrup and pistachios was extra delicious and crunchy (although I think that that lime glaze on top of all that might be been overkill). This cake is a refreshingly unusual and delicious variation on typical angel food cake, and it received rave reviews from tasters. I can't wait to make this cake again.

Recipe: "Lime Angel Food Cake with Lime Glaze and Pistachios," from


Louise said…
Maybe I was still new to BAKED, but somehow I missed this in Bon Appetit April 2010. The warm weather must have us all craving limes. I just made the Key Lime Meringue Cake on the Gourmet website and a friend did a Lime Bundt Cake.