Coffee Angel Food Cake with Hazelnut-Coffee Glaze


Coffee Angel Food Cake with Hazelnut-Coffee Glaze

I LOVE THE WAY a little instant espresso powder gives a bitter edge to angel food cake. Other liqueurs (Grand Marnier is good) or liquors (bourbon or dark rum) could replace the Frangelico in the glaze, or you could leave it out altogether if you prefer.


For the cake 

1 cup cake flour 

11 ⁄2 cups sugar 

1 ⁄4 teaspoon salt 

1 tablespoon plus 

1 teaspoon instant espresso powder 

12 large egg whites 

1 teaspoon cream of tartar 

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 

For the glaze 

6 tablespoons (3 ⁄4 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces 

6 tablespoons firmly packed light brown sugar 

2 teaspoons instant espresso powder 

6 tablespoons heavy cream 11 ⁄2 cups confectioners’ sugar 

2 tablespoons hazelnut liqueur


1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Have ready a 9-inch ungreased angel food tube pan with a removable bottom. 

2. Combine the flour, 3 ⁄4 cup sugar, salt, and instant espresso powder in a medium mixing bowl and whisk thoroughly to break up any lumps. Set aside. 

3. Place the egg whites in a large mixing bowl and whip them with an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment on medium speed until frothy. Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat on medium speed until the egg whites begin to turn white. With the mixer still on medium speed, pour in the remaining 3 ⁄4 cup sugar in a slow, steady stream and whip until the whites are shiny white and just hold soft, floppy peaks when the whisk is lifted from the mixture. Stir in the vanilla until just mixed in. 

4. Place a small fine-mesh strainer over the bowl of egg whites and strain about 1 ⁄4 cup of the flour mixture into the egg white mixture. Gently fold in the flour mixture with a rubber spatula. Repeat with the remaining flour mixture in 1 ⁄4-cup increments until all of it has been folded in. Pour the batter into the tube pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Bake the cake until it is golden brown and the top springs back when you touch it, about 50 minutes. 

5. Remove the pan from the oven. If your pan has feet, invert the pan onto a heatproof surface and allow it to cool. If your pan doesn’t have feet, invert 4 heatproof drinking glasses on the counter and rest the inverted pan on top of the glasses to allow air to circulate around the cake while it cools. Let the cake cool in the pan for at least 1 hour or for up to 6 hours.

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