Orange Chiffon Cake
6 extra large egg yolks
7 extra large egg whites
2 ¼ cups cake flour, sifted
1 ½ cups superfine sugar, divided into 1 ¼ cup and ¼ cup
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons grated orange zest (be sure to wash oranges first)
½ cup vegetable oil
¾ cup orange juice, freshly squeezed and strained
1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cream of tartar
For best results, separate the eggs while they are still cold, and then cover each bowl with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before using.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees and place rack in the lower center position. Have a 10-inch two-piece tube ready to use (ungreased).
In the bowl of your stand mixer, or a large bowl, place the sifted flour, 1 ¼ cups sugar (reserve the other ¼ cup for later use), baking powder, salt and orange zest. Use the paddle attachment or a hand mixer to beat on low speed until combined.
Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add, in order, the egg yolks, oil, orange juice and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
In a separate mixing bowl, use the whisk attachment to beat the egg whites on medium-low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat on medium speed until soft peaks form.
Gradually add the remaining ¼ cup of sugar, one tablespoon at a time, and beat on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, about 3 minutes. In three stages, use a rubber spatula or large whisk to gently fold the egg white mixture into the batter until it is just combined.
Pour the batter evenly into the ungreased tube pan and gently cut through batter with a knife. Bake for about 50 to 60 minutes, until the top springs back when pressed and a wooden skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
Immediately upon removing from the oven, invert the cake pan on its feet or over a bottle, and let hang until cold, about 1 ½ to 2 hours.
To remove cake from pan: Once the cake has cooled, run a long, serrated knife (life a bread knife) or a long offset spatula along the inside of the tube pan, around the center core and along the top. Invert cake onto a piece of parchment paper (to prevent sticking) and remove from pan.
To serve: Dust top generously with powdered sugar, serve with whipped cream and fresh fruit. Also good when drizzled with orange liqueur, served with fruit sauce or topped with a flavored glaze.
To store: Store in an airtight container for several days at room temperature or in the refrigerator for at least a week. Can be frozen for 2 to 3 months, either whole or in slices.
- To make superfine sugar, mix white granulated sugar in a food processor for 2 minutes.
- Egg whites reach superior volume when whipped at room temperature.
- If you’re new to whipping egg whites, you can find an abundance of images online to use for a visual reference.