Monday, July 15, 2013

Lemon Glow Chiffon Cake

Guess what the Baking Partners Challenge is one year old since this group has started. Congratulations to the entire team members to reach this wonderful milestone. Special thanks to Swathi  for starting this group. Each time I learn something very different from the variety of challenges in this group and I am so happy that I am part of this too.

Chiffon cakes are foam cakes, airy and pillowy in texture and combine richness of a butter cake with lightness of a sponge cake.

Coming to the cake, this  does require some mind blowing steps which were fun to do, but it is not a hard recipe. If followed correctly, the cake could be made within couple of hours.

This recipe was suggested by Saraswathi of Sara’s kitchen and she adapted this recipe from the book The Cake Bible written by Rose Levy Beranbaum. 

Chiffon cakes are foam cakes that have a soft and spongy texture. This cake is very similar in appearance to angel food cake and is usually baked in the same type of tube pan. Chiffon cakes, unlike angel food cakes, contain both egg yolks and vegetable oil. These two ingredients keep the cake moist, soft and tender that tastes great and keeps well.  

Even when refrigerated this cake remains soft. The reason being that this cake contains oil instead of butter which remains soft even in the refrigerator unlike butter which hardens when refrigerated. . Because of the lower fat level than butter cake and less cholesterol and saturated fat, this could very well be the guilt free cake that you could indulge in. 

The chiffon cake was created by Harry Baker, a Los Angeles insurance agent, in 1927.  Baker carefully guarded his secret technique for almost two decades, only selling his cakes to celebrities and the famous Brown Derby restaurant. The popularity of his cakes grew quickly, and he eventually sold the recipe to General Mills in 1947. 

Now, Mr. Baker had two big secrets with his chiffon cake recipe. The first is that chiffon cakes use oil instead of butter, which aides in the airy quality of the cake. It is also nice because the cake can be refrigerated without firming up. The second secret of the chiffon cake is to whip the egg whites separately from the yolks and to fold them ever so gently into the batter.  If done correctly, the results are divine. If not, you can end up with an oozy-gooey mess in your pans.

Prep time: 30 minutes
Baking time: 50 to 55 minutes
Serves:  one ungreased two piece 10 inch tube pan.
Can be halved and baked in 9 inch tube pan. or 10 inch round cake pan or 8 inch round cake pan + 6 inch cake pan as shown in the picture. I halved and made this.

Dry Ingredients:
2 ¼ cups (8 ounces) / 225g  cake flour
1 ½  cups + 2 tbsp. / 300g caster sugar
½  tsp. / 3.5g salt
½  tsp. baking soda
1 ~ 2 tbsp.  lemon zest

Wet Ingredients:

½ cup / 108g canola oil / sunflower oil
3 no / 130g large egg yolks
2/3  cup / 156g water @ room temperature
2 tbsp.  / 30g lemon juice
1 tsp.  Vanilla essence

For Meringue:

1 ¼ tsp. / 4g cream of tartar
2 tbsp.  / 30 g sugar
7 no / 300g large egg whites


Heat your oven to 155 degrees Celsius / 325 degree Fahrenheit

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.  Grab your 10-inch tube pan with a detachable bottom, but do not grease it as the batter needs to climb up the sides

In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 ½  cups of the sugar and the lemon zest. With your fingertips, work the zest and sugar together until the sugar is grainy and very aromatic.  Add the cake flour, baking soda and salt to the bowl.

If using a stand mixer, use the beater attachment and beat on low until the ingredients are well incorporated. You can also do this by hand with a whisk.

Make a well in the center  of the ingredients and add the oil, egg yolks, water, lemon juice and vanilla.   Mix for about one minute on medium speed until the batter is smooth and there are no lumps.

In a second large mixing bowl, beat the egg whites until they are foamy.  Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat on medium speed until they reach soft peak stage. You will know your egg whites have reached this stage when the beaters start to leave a trail or when the peaks fall over when the beaters are raised. Add the remaining 2 Tbsp.  of sugar, and continue to beat the egg whites until they form stiff peaks when the beaters are raised.

Using a slotted spoon or balloon whisk, add 1/3 of  egg whites to your cake batter and gently stir them until they are incorporated. Add the remaining egg whites to the batter and very gently fold them into the batter until they are incorporated and no traces of egg whites remain.

Pour the batter into the (ungreased) pan and run a small metal spatula or knife through the batter to prevent air pockets. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes  or until the cake bounces back when lightly pressed in the center.  

Once cooked, take the cake out of the oven and immediately turn it upside down over a bottle* or similar to it  until it is completely  cool, which can take up to 90 minutes.

Using an up and down motion, use a palette knife to loosen the sides of the cake away from the tin. Pull out the cake and use the palette knife around the bottom of the cake to release it from the base. Turn it over so that the base becomes the top and sprinkle with a dusting of icing sugar to serve.

I whipped some fresh cream, cut the cake into 2 rings and put some cream and then put some  strawberry compote and fresh sliced strawberries.  and topped the other layer and decorated it more strawberries. Whilst serving added a scoop of vanilla ice-cream. 

Stay fresh for 3 days in room temperature,  10 days refrigerated,  2  months frozen.

* I suggest you test some bottles when the cake tin is empty to make sure you have one on hand that fits. I found  stainless steel tumblers  works for me



  1. Looks awesome and lovely facts and tips on making chiffon cake

  2. Lovely cake Latha! I love the strawberry compote layer that you added in the cake. It would add a nice tartness to the cake :)

  3. Your version of chiffon cake looks delicious. Love the strawberry topping.

  4. Awesome Cake :)

  5. Nice healthy version without butter. Berries on top and lemon infused inside made this cake so fabulous.

  6. yummilicious and soft moist cake.... tempting

  7. Nice cake topped with Strawberry, I am sure it tasted great.

  8. Chiffon cake looks great.happy to follow u.

  9. looks very soft & to grab all.

  10. lovely cake..first time here...happy to follow you...

  11. Perfectly made cake.....looks so moist and yummy..


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