My Nostalgic Gluten Free Angel Cake

17th June 2020
Blog post

So it turns out gluten free Angel Cake isn’t just any old sponge, its a Genoise! Clearly, I’d missed that episode on the Bake Off and had never even heard of it until a month or so ago.

The challenge was set… and I’ve done it!!! Here is my recipe for a proper, genoise Angel Cake. Its actually super easy, its just very different. It uses plain flour and no raising agents – the secret in the fluffy, airy, sponginess is the eggs!! You whip them up in a special way, add flour and sugar and taaa dahhhh.

I REALLY recommend making this – don’t be put off by the fancy Genoise bit. It makes the most beautiful, lightest sponge I have ever eaten. Genuinely.

Gluten Free Angel Cake

The Importance of Eggs

They’re not just super helpful for making my gluten free Angel Cakes rise…

Did you know?? A new study into vitamin D deficiency and COVID-19 infections, published in the BMJ, has concluded that those self-isolating should eat more foods rich in the ‘sunshine vitamin’ to keep their immune systems fighting fit!! Public Health England have even recommended that everybody takes a vitamin D supplement to ensure they are getting enough each day

I always pick Happy Eggs. Why? Their ‘girls’ are fed on a diet rich in Vitamin D and just two large Happy Eggs provide over 94% of your daily recommended vitamin D intake, 28% more vitamin D than standard eggs. They also provide their hens with 20% natural shade (vs RSPCA min of 5%), as well as towers, sandpits & watering cans to encourage play. Happy Eggs = Happy hens & happy me ?

Other Good sources of Vitamin D? Oily fish, cheese, mushrooms, and soy milk (or other fortified milks).

Gluten Free Angel Cake

My Top Tips for Gluten Free Angel Cake Perfection

(1) MAKE 1 LAYER AT A TIME

I would usually recommend making the base for all of the layers at once, dividing into 3, and adding food colourings/flavouring … just because its usually a little quicker and produces the same results. For this recipe, I really wouldn’t recommend that. Make the cake batter for each layer separately, even if you put them in the oven at the same tine. This is because steps 7 & 8 of the recipe call for “folding”. The more mix you’ve got, the harder it is to fold and you risk losing all the air you’ve whipped into the eggs.

(2) FOLDING

Here’s a really good recipe to show you how to fold in the flour and butter…

This recipe is different from mine but skip to 2 mins 40 to see how he folds the flour into his mix.

Ready for the Recipe???

This is going to look like a LOT of steps but honestly, its just because I’ve included 10001 tips…

Gluten Free Angel Cake

My gluten free Angel Cake is made of 3 delish layers of genoise sponge – vanilla, raspberry & lemon. Surprisingly easy & the lightest cake I have ever eaten
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Servings: 1 x 2lb loaf tin
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: english
Keyword: gluten free angel cake, gluten free baking, gluten free cake

Ingredients

Vanilla Layer

  • 2 Happy Eggs
  • 15 grams spreadI use dairy free spread but regular brands would work too – e.g. Flora
  • 65 grams gluten free plain flour
  • 65 grams caster sugar

Raspberry Layer

  • 2 Happy Eggs
  • 15 grams spread
  • 65 grams gluten free plain flour
  • 65 grams caster sugar
  • Capful of raspberry flavouring and tiny bit of pink food colouring

Lemon Layer

  • 2 Happy Eggs
  • 15 grams spread
  • 65 grams gluten free plain flour
  • 65 grams caster sugar
  • Capful of lemon flavouring and tiny bit of yellow food colouring

Italian Meringue Buttercream

  • 1 Happy Eggs – but just the white!
  • 100 grams caster sugar
  • 85 grams spread/butter
  • And a little icing sugar for dusting/drizzling over the top

Alternative Buttercream if you haven't got a candy/cooking thermometer

  • 80 grams spread/butter
  • 100 grams icing sugar

Instructions

  • Pre-heat your oven to 175oC.
  • Line a 2lb loaf tin with baking paper.
    >If you have 3 loaf tins, you can line 3 tins, make the 3 layers below & pour into each, and cook at the same time. If not, just cook 1 layer at a time (that's what I do and it honestly doesn't take that long!!)

Vanilla Layer

  • Place the butter/spread into a pan on a low heat, until its fully melted. Set aside to cool.
  • Place the eggs and sugar into a mixing bowl.
  • Add about 1 inch of water to a saucepan. Bring to a very, very low simmer.
  • Once the water is simmering, place the mixing bowl ontop of the saucepan.
    >Make sure the base of the mixing bowl doesn't touch the water otherwise it'll cook and scramble the eggs!
  • Whisk the egg and sugar together whilst on the pan for exactly 20 seconds.
    >The idea is to melt the sugar. If you pinch a bit of the mix between your fingers after 20 seconds, you shouldn't feel any of the gritty sugar there.
    >If you have a cooking/candy thermometer, the mixture should be around 35-40oC but don't worry if you haven't got one, 20 secs will be perfect!
    >You can use a hand whisk or an electric whisk at this point, whatever feels easiest to use whilst over the cooker.
  • Remove the bowl from the heat (take it off the saucepan and just place it on the worktop) and whisk until its thick but airy (a bit like mousse). When you lift your whisk, it should form ribbon patterns in the mixture, which will hold their shape for around 3-5 seconds.
    >Might just be me but I always find it a little scary to judge when its at the perfect consistency, so its helpful to time it. It takes 4 mins with an electric whisk on full speed to get the consistency I'm looking for.
  • Working quickly, sift the flour over the egg mixture and the FOLD in with a spatula/large spoon.
    >Don't use the whisk as you'll lose all that lovely air!!
    >There's a great video for how to do this, I've added it in the "tips" section of the blog post above
    >Tip: if you lean your bowl to one side (like the pic) and repeat the folding action, you can see if there's any sneaky flour that is still sitting at the bottom of the bowl.
    >Keep going until you can see NO pockets of flour. You want it to be lovely and smooth!
  • Pour the melted butter into the bowl and repeat the folding action until its fully incorporated.
    >Tip: lean the bowl to the side again. The butter has a tendancy to sink to the bottom and hide there too!
  • Gently pour the mixture into your loaf tin and place into the oven for 15 mins.
    >To test if its cooked, press the lightly on the top of the cake and it should spring back 🙂
  • Remove from the oven, carefully lift the cake out of the loaf tin, remove the baking paper and leave to cool on a cooling rack.
    >This is one of very few cakes that can instantly be removed from the baking tin as soon as its been taken out of the oven

Lemon & Raspberry Layer

  • Repeat the steps above for the lemon and raspberry layer. Add the flavourings & colourings to the thick, silky egg bowl BEFORE folding in the flour & butter. This is so you can use the electric whisk to mix everything together and ensure an even colouring.
    >You can add the flavourings & colourings at the very end, but its very difficult to gently fold them in without overmixing and losing that air AND get a consistent colour.

Italian Meringue Buttercream

  • Add 3 tbsp of water and the caster sugar to a saucepan. Turn to a very low heat and keep stirring the mixture until the sugar has melted
    >You can tell when the sugar has melted by placing a spoon into the mix. When you lift out the spoon, there shouldn't be any visible grains of sugar visible.
  • At that point, leaving the pan on the heat, whisk the egg white until it reaches soft peaks.
  • Then, increase the heat of the sugar/water solution so it starts to boil. Leave (don't stir) until it reaches 120°C/250°F on your cooking/candy thermometer.
  • Slowly pour the sugar solution into the egg white, whisking at high speed constantly.
    >If possible, its safest to have two people at this stage – one whisking, one pouring!
    >When pouring, try to avoid the sides of the bowl as it will instantly cool and get stuck there.
  • Add 1 tbsp of butter/spread to the mixture and whisk in. Repeat for the rest of the butter.
  • Place into the fridge/freezer to chill and firm up.
    >Ideally, leave it for at least 15 mins in the freezer.

Alternative Buttercream

  • Add the butter and icing sugar to a mixing bowl and whisk together until pale, smooth and fluffy.

Construction

  • Once all 3 layers of cake are completely cool, layer them buttericing and stack them up!
  • You can then either (1) dust the top with icing sugar or (2) combine a little icing sugar with water and drizzle over the top. Then, make a small amount of pink icing sugar and drizzle in lines over the top of the white (along the short sides). Drag a toothpick lengthways (opposite direction to your pink lines) along the cake to create the feathering .
Print Recipe

Want some more baking recipes? Head over my Baking Section for loads of ideas!

Or looking for my regular vanilla sponge (like you’d use for a Victoria Sponge cake), head over to my Traybake Cake! You can use the recipe to make large cakes, cupcakes, loaf cakes, whatever you fancy 😛


*This recipe was part of a paid partnership with Happy Eggs, a brand I use regularly and love! As always, the views, recipe and all of the pictures are my own*

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