This tasty cake is yet another variation of my all time favorite sponge cake recipe (posted HERE). In this version, I substituted half of the orange juice with cranberry juice, which gave it another layer of both acidity and sweetens, and pinkish color.
Instead of baking the cake in two pans, as I usually do, I decided to bake it this time in a Bundt cake pan. But when I started filling the pan with the batter, I realized it was too small for it. So, I quickly filled a mini Bundt cake with the rest of the batter, and baked the two pans side by side. Now, instead of having just one cake, I also had twelve mini ones, that were so perfect for serving as individual desserts. Win-win!
One more change I’ve made was to not coat the cakes with butter cream, but rather, infuse them with a light cranberry–orange syrup. The cakes soaked the syrup beautifully, while keeping their shape, and became moist and fragrant. Try them and enjoy.
* For best results, all the ingredients should be at room temperature.
* If you want to end up with a fluffy cake, make sure not to skip the sifting stage.
* Any trace of fat in the egg whites or the bowl will prevent proper whipping. Note that egg yolks are fatty, so separate the eggs carefully.
* Egg whites whip better with a bit of acidity, which is why we add the vinegar. The vinegar will not affect the flavor, so no need to hesitate about using it.
* The cakes can keep, covered in the fridge, for up to 3 days.
Makes: 1 large Bundt cake + 12 mini
Prep time: 30 minutes
Baking time: 40 minutes for the large, 20 minutes for the mini
For the syrup:
1 cup water
½ cup cranberry juice
½ cup fresh orange juice, strained
¾ cup sugar
1/3 cup smooth strawberry jam
For the cake:
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
6 XL eggs
¼ cup oil
½ cup cranberry juice
½ cup fresh orange juice
½ tsp vanilla
1½ cups sugar
½ tsp vinegar
1. The syrup: mix all the ingredients in a small pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 10 minutes. Let cool and place in the fridge until using.
2. Preheat the oven to 340F (170C). Place the rack in the middle of the oven. Butter and lightly flour a large Bundt cake pan, and a mini Bundt cake pan.
3. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt in a sifter. Set aside. Separate the eggs: the egg whites into the mixer bowl and the egg yolks into a large mixing bowl.
4. Add the oil and ¼ cup of the sugar to the egg yolks and mix well. Add the cranberry and orange juice and vanilla and whisk together.
5. Add the vinegar to the egg whites and start whipping on medium-low speed. When large bubbles start to form, increase the mixer’s speed to medium and start adding the sugar slowly. Increase the speed to medium-high and continue whipping until a firm and shiny meringue is formed.
6. Add a small amount of the meringue to the bowl with the egg yolks mixture and whisk well. Now add about half of the rest of the meringue, and this time, whisk gently, so that the meringue will not break.
7. Sift the flour mixture over and fold it gently with the whisk. Change the whisk to spatula, add the rest of the meringue and mix gently to form a smooth batter. Do not over mix. Divide the batter between the two pans and place, side by side, in the oven.
8. Bake the cakes: 20 minutes for the mini pan and 40 minutes for the large one. The cakes should be golden and pull from the sides of the pan, and when you press the center of one with your finger, the cake bounces back .
9. Transfer the cakes to a rack and let cool for 3 minutes in the pans. Turn out of the pans and place the cakes in two deep pans. Pour 1/3 of the cold syrup over the mini ones and the rest over the large cake, and cover. Let the cakes soak the syrup and cool completely before serving.