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Robert J.

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The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Robert J. » Sun Nov 25, 2007 5:18 pm

This is open to all who are willing to participate. So far we have Jenise, Leslie, and myself. We are going to back a Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake with a Buttercream Frosting (Mocha).

Let's keep track of how much we spend and see if we can make a superior cake than the one offered by Williams-Sonoma. They are selling theirs for $59!!! Ouch! :shock: I'm willing to bet that I can do one for about $10 cost. That would make my retail about $20. Howie posted a pic in the other thread. Have a look at it and see how close you can get.

I have my basic recipe and will post it later when I am not at work (or when work slows down). Let's take pics and make this a good showdown! If anyone has any other suggestions then bringe 'em on. Just remember, it's not a competition. We just want to collectively kick the ass of Williams-Sonoma.

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Re: Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Jenise » Sun Nov 25, 2007 5:33 pm

Barb's in too!
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Barb Freda

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Re: Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Barb Freda » Sun Nov 25, 2007 8:09 pm

Oh, I am SO in! I won't get to bake until Tuesday, but that's my task for the day. I'm not much of a baker so this will be a big adventure!

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Howie Hart

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Howie Hart » Sun Nov 25, 2007 8:47 pm

Thanksgiving was also my son Pete's birthday, but he's in Fort Lewis, WA (see post on my trip last month). However, he will be getting home for a month or so on December 5th and I promised him a birthday cake when he gets here, so I think I'll give it a go in a few weeks.
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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Celia » Sun Nov 25, 2007 8:58 pm

I don't have an angel foodcake tin ! Do you reckon I could use a bundt pan ? Sigh...what am I going to do with 16 egg yolks ? :)
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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Robert J. » Sun Nov 25, 2007 9:05 pm

Just go get the pan Celia. And then make some hollandaise.

This is gonna be sooooo much fun.

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Howie Hart

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Howie Hart » Sun Nov 25, 2007 9:09 pm

celia wrote:I don't have an angel foodcake tin ! Do you reckon I could use a bundt pan ? Sigh...what am I going to do with 16 egg yolks ? :)
Make mayonnaise. Or make Almond Chocolate Creme Brulee, which is almost in keeping with the theme of this thread.
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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Celia » Sun Nov 25, 2007 9:10 pm

Ah, can't use bundt ? Then sorry, I'm out. :) Probably for the best, no-one has coffee at our house, and my son's allergic to nuts !
There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. - Albert Einstein

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Barb Freda

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Barb Freda » Mon Nov 26, 2007 5:43 pm

Celia.

My buttercream calls for a fair few yolks, so I won't be suffering too much. I talked my brother into trying this, too.

I was happy to find my nana's angel food cake pan still in my cupboard. Why I didn't get rid of that is beyond me, but I am glad I didn't!

B
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Cynthia Wenslow

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Cynthia Wenslow » Mon Nov 26, 2007 6:06 pm

OK, perhaps I need to play too!

While moving this past month, I rediscovered my grandmother's angel food cake pan. I don't recall her ever having made one, but like you, Barb, I have held onto it all these years.
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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Jenise » Mon Nov 26, 2007 6:12 pm

Celia, of COURSE you can use the bundt pan. Use LOTS of Pam, though, since you won't be able to release it from the edges with a knife.
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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Robert J. » Mon Nov 26, 2007 10:10 pm

Do it Celia! DO IT!!! Let's kick their f***king butt!

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Mike Filigenzi

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Mike Filigenzi » Tue Nov 27, 2007 12:55 am

What's the deadline on this? I kinda doubt that I can get it done before the weekend, but it would be fun to try.
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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Jenise » Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:08 am

No deadline, Mike; any time over the next two weeks let's say.
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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Mike Filigenzi » Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:59 am

Okay - I just went and checked out the picture that Howie posted. We can beat this easily. Piece of cake.
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Barb Freda

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Barb Freda » Tue Nov 27, 2007 11:02 am

I've just done step 1, my buttercream. And I must say, although I thought I hated buttercream, I love this. I made Rose B's Neoclassic buttercream from Cake Bible and I added two tablespoons of brewed espresso (extra from my daily espresso) and 1/2 tsp. of almond extract.

What I like is that it is so ...so just right sweet and a very lovely light mocha shade...

I have to go buy cocoa, though. Can't believe it's not in the pantry, but my daughter is the great experimenter, and I can only guess that is where my cocoa went.

My best guess, though, is that this will cost me about $15. $4 for a pound of butter, $4 for almonds and just under $4 for enough eggs to get the egg whites....$3 for the rest of little bits and pieces...(I used Breakstone butter and hormone-free eggs, so those are a bit more expensive)

I will finish later today after I get that cocoa.

B
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Robert J.

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Robert J. » Tue Nov 27, 2007 1:39 pm

Cool Barb! That sounds awesome. I am going to make mine this weekend.

What is the consensus on flour? I am trying to decide if I should use AP or cake flour. Any thoughts on this? I'm leaning toward cake flour.

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Jenise

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Jenise » Tue Nov 27, 2007 1:57 pm

Robert, I dunno what works best for angel food. What does the Cake Bible say, those of you who own that work?
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Barb Freda

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Re: The Great Mocha Almond Angel Food Cake Challenge

by Barb Freda » Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:33 pm

Cake bible says cake flour..and so does Cook's Illustrated Best Recipe...

Cake is in the oven....This is exciting...I'm off to toast some sliced almonds

ANd on another note, I think $10 is a fairer assessment of price after checking Costco...if I'd been more judicious in buying...Already knock $2 off just for the almonds: I only used half the bag I bought...

Butter on sale: $2.50, not $4...

Eggs: good (if not hormone free) can be had locally for about $1.50 a dozen...

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Photos..

by Barb Freda » Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:16 pm

First, let me say, I don't think Rose's idea of inverting the cake over a bottle is a great one, but far be it from me to question her. Thing is, exactly that which I feared came to pass: the cake PLOPPED out of the pan of its own volition...so I would let it cool until I could invert it on to the pan's feet, then at least if it fell out, it would only fall an inch or so..

That said, that was my only disaster and I just made two cakes out of it--trimmed it up and iced it then.

It is GOOD..
I noted my buttercream above...for the cake, I cooked from the Cake Bible, too--Her Chocolate Lover's Angel Food Cake. I followed it exactly, but didn't whip the white to stiff peaks, going for the soft peaks recommended in Cook's Ill....and I added one tsp. vanilla and one tsp almond extract.
The top photo show it a bit lopsided because of the break. The second photo is after ( ahem) trimmed it.

I would make this again in a heartbeat. It was pretty easy...The cake is good on its own without the icing, too, but I love the flavor AND I love the texture of the toasted almonds.

And now a photo or two:


Image
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Cynthia Wenslow

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Re: Photos..

by Cynthia Wenslow » Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:36 pm

Oh my, Barb! That looks delicious!!!
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Re: Photos..

by Jenise » Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:56 pm

Yum, Barb, I want a piece.

Re the inverting the cake over a bottle? My mom did that for every angel food cake she baked and I've also always done that, too. Seems to keep the upper crust crustier. And suspending it somehow is a must for any cake pan (Celia, you listening?) that doesn't have feet to hold it above the surface.
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Re: Photos..

by Leslie D. » Tue Nov 27, 2007 9:09 pm

I've got my eggs!! I've got my eggs!!
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Barb Freda

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Re: Photos..

by Barb Freda » Tue Nov 27, 2007 10:38 pm

It was way too puffy to use the little feet attached to the pan, so I get why the bottle---I just didn't expect it to release itself...I wonder if I'd let it sit ten minutes would it have settled down into the pan a bit--then I could have just inverted it..


But still...killer cake. Great idea, Jenise...

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