Homemade Angelfood Cake

I missed Lucy’s birthday in May so we’re having her party tomorrow which calls for homemade angelfood cake and chocolate ice cream, her favorite which is great with me, too.

My neighbor, Emma, taught me how to make this cake over the years after I moved here in 1979.  She had chickens which meant eggs and she always made this for my birthday.  The recipe calls for 1-1/2 to 2 cups of egg whites.

She was very careful to sift the sugar and cake flour three times and add it to the stiff egg whites a tablespoon at a time.

I got her square pan when she died.

The cake cooled on the counter for several hours.

And it came out of the pan beautifully!

On Saturday when I was in Sac City, I visited the thrift store and I am thrilled with this $3.00 purchase of a cross stitch collie dog on linen about 5″ x 7″.  I think it’s a real treasure!

I keep forgetting to elaborate about Bernina machines.  Back in 1981 when Connie and I were just meeting and exploring the quilt design business I had an inexpensive Singer and Connie had a Kenmore and we were quite proud of the fact that for many years we started and successfully ran our business with these simple machines.  But then they started needing repairs and constant maintenance because we sewed so much and finding a sewing machine repairman wasn’t easy and we each had just the one machine in those early days.  We didn’t want to and couldn’t be without our machine for up to two weeks because we were working and needed our machines so we started asking people at market and other designers in the industry what kind of machine they had or what kind they recommended.  Overall the most common remark we heard was that Bernina machines were so reliable, they rarely needed any repairs and very little maintenance.  We heard stories like “I’ve had my Bernina for 17 years and it’s never had one thing wrong with it!”  People could maintain their own machines and they ran without any complaints year after year.  That is what sold us on Bernina machines and we have found it to be absolutely true!  We sew hours every day and our machines hold up to heavy use.  They are easy to use and Connie’s comment about accuracy speaks volumes.  The 1230 I mentioned was a popular machine about 25 years ago and it’s the one I use all the time – until my new one.  Everybody says “I don’t need all that fancy stuff.”  Well, surprise, neither do we but I know it can sew a perfect stitch and in order to get that quality, that big quilting space and all that potential if I should want it, I choose Bernina.  If you haven’t ever sewn on a Bernina and you’re shopping for a machine, stop at your Bernina dealer for some test sewing before you decide on a machine.  I think I’ll go sew on mine right now – all this talking about sewing makes me want to sew something!

35 thoughts on “Homemade Angelfood Cake

  1. MartyCae

    I remember the square pan – my Grandma had one.
    I splurged on a Bernina and I have never regretted it. I have not had any problems and the tension is always good. I think you get what you pay for.
    Time for a picture of Ernie Joe. 🙂

  2. Diane

    Wow–that cake looks delicious. I have never seen a square angel pan. Neat. The Collie cross stitch is really neat. Enjoy your Bernina. I’ve never had any trouble with my 1530 or the new 750. One habit I have broken is leaving the bobbin door open when I sew b/c the little bobbin reminder comes on to tell me something isn’t right!!

  3. Ann Barlament

    Wow that’s a lot of egg whites, but I bet it’s light and fluffy.

    Back in the 1970’s I bought my first sewing machine, Singer Touch & Sew. It had cams that fit into the top to get fancy stitches (can’t remember ever using them). When it became a door-stop I went shopping. I tried everything and took notes, brought different fabric with me and checked out everything thoroughly.

    As I was going over all my notes one night…My honey, Wayne, brought out this sad looking sewing machine and offered it to me. His father had been a repairman and this was the best of the bunch. Rusty, covered in cobwebs….I thanked him for the generous offer and declined saying I wanted something I could machine quilt with.

    Trust me, I never shared how much I was willing to pay for a machine, with all the bells and whistles. And I never asked how much he spent on computers!! LOL

  4. helen freese

    I’ve had a Bernina Record 930 Electronic for 40 years and it still is going strong (hope I am not jinxing myself). Everytime I change the bobbin I air-clean it and sometimes oil it. I use a 000 foot and keep my needle one notch to the right–A PERFECT 1/4 SEAM. I hope it outlives me, I am 75 and not interested in a newer model.

  5. Launa

    Mary, I see you used Swans Down cake flour, too! If you’re ever out of it take a TBS of flour out of the recipe amount and replace it with a TBS of corn starch; sift well and it works quite the same. Never saw a square pan either…..cake looks wonderful.

    I’ve had my 1530 Bernina for years. Sew and machine quilt with it almost daily. I oil and clean it often. Too hot to be outside today….both granddogs are here today enjoying the AC and their dog treats. Hopefully your new flock of chicks have ventured outside.

    A most happy birthday to Lucy………

  6. Kim Anderson

    May I please have your angel food cake recipe….I also have a square pan, don’t see them very often! I really enjoy reading your blog, and hope to make a rug someday, when I retire!

  7. Carol

    I have a Bernina 1260, about 20 some years and live it. I also have a newer 630, also love!

    And right now I’d love some angel food cake with strawberries and whipped cream!

  8. Betty Klosterman

    In the “old” days, probably the 40’s…..Mom said my Grandma Carlson from Norway used to beat the egg whites into the mixture and her cakes turned out just as good as anybody else’s. No folding for her. She wasn’t a lot of fun, but she fed us good. She would buy smoked salmon from salesmen and that was to die for.

  9. Ann Gupton

    I love my 440 Bernina Quilters Edition…
    but yours looks grand! Has my brain thinking…
    which might not be good…haha

  10. Darla C

    Happy belated birthday Lucy. Today is my daughters’ birthday and she requested an angel food cake! I didn’t make it from scratch but it is still good. I have never seen a square pan. I’ll have to start looking.

  11. Donna Sproston

    Perhaps it is time to go look at a Bernina. I can now buy one within 20 miles of my house which was one of my first considerations. I do not want the fancy stuff either, but some bells and whistles would be nice. I am really curious about the electronic stitch regulator and if it works for those who do free motion quilting.

  12. Lauren

    Your cake looks wonderful. What do you do with the yolks?? I know you will love your new toy! I have a 710 and when that goes in the spa I have a 550QE. Love the space on the 710 and the LED lighting. Also the extra arm in the back makes fabric stay in place. I would suggest you get the 97D foot for that 1/4″ seam. It’s pricey but oh so worth it. Enjoy and can’t wait to see what you create!!

  13. Linda Hanley

    Hi Mary – I have had a Bernina for about 12 years. I have not had any problems with it. I also have a couple other machines but they don’t compare to my Bernina! I hope you have many, many happy hours with your Bernina!
    I have never seen a square angel food pan before. When I go antiquing I’m going to be on the lookout for one! Will you share your recipe with us? I’d love to make it? Thanks for listening. Linda

  14. Linda

    Ever since I started sewing whether it be clothes or when I started quilting, I have always had a Bernina. My husband insisted on quality and that is what I have had. I too had 1230 and I have had my 350 for the past 3 years. What a quilting work horse. Only machine I will ever buy. Happy quilting!

  15. Sherry Whalen

    The cake looks yummy! When I was growing up on the farm, we always had chickens so we always had eggs. My mom always made the best home made angel food cake and so that is how I make angel food cake too! I didn’t even know you could buy angel food cake mix! She also has a cake recipe that used the 12 egg yolks – so we always had that cake too, and it was as good as the angel food, especially with ice cream and cherry pie filling on it!

    I have always had a Bernina – I got my first, a record 830 in 1977. There was a machine salesman at the Howard county fair – and I signed up for something…so of course they came to my house for a demo. My MIL came over too and we each bought one. We had no money so I had to make payments. I still have my old girl and after my in-laws died I took custody of my MIL’s machine as well. I also have a Bernina 160 and a 440QE. I love and use them all.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Sherry – hang on to all of them! They are great machines. I’d sort of like to have the cake recipe for the egg yolks – I cooked them for dog treats which was met with approval.

      1. Betty Klosterman

        Wouldn’t the cake made with egg yolks be a “sunshine cake” or maybe a sponge cake?

  16. Carolyn Boutilier

    Hi, I found a square angel food cake pan at a thrift store several weeks ago . I love it. Several years ago when my Singer Athena quit working, I bought a Bernina 430 and I love sewing on this machine. It does not move when sewing and very little maintance.
    Carolyn B Shenandoah Valley VA

  17. Mary Ann

    I also have a 1230 and it is a workhorse. Although I do have other machines, this is the one I always go back to. A local dealer, who sadly passed away, once told me if I bought an additional Bernina, do not trade in the 1230. I am really happy that I listened to her. Love your new Bernina.

  18. Paula

    I completely agree with you about the Bernina’s. I love my first one bought used in 1991 (remains my favorite go to machine) and then I bought another in 2010. Also love those Singer Featherweights, they are very popular around here.
    Paula in KY

  19. Carol

    The Singer Featherweights are very popular in my quilt guild as well. Just curious as to why you or Connie have never owned one, or maybe you have? I still have a very inexpensive Singer which has kept on going strong, but when it decides to give up the fight I will have to look into a Bernina. My Singer is very loud, so I really want a machine that is quiet!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Carol – we both own 2 Featherweights but they’re just not fast enough nor sturdy enough. More of a collectors item for us than anything.

  20. Jeanie

    Thanks for sharing your angelfood cake story, which evoked lovely memories. My grandmother made many of those beauties for my childhood birthdays. For my father’s 90th birthday, his girlfriend made one. My little granddaughters had never experienced angelfood cake and were enthralled by the “angel cake.”

  21. Kathy Gourley

    My Mom had a square pan that went missing before she died and I missed it. One day I found one at a garage sale for a quarter. It was like she sent me a sweet kiss. Your cake looks wonderful.

  22. Teresa

    Could you share the angel food cake recipe. I also have chickens and at this time of year they are very good layers.

  23. Cathy

    That angel food cake brought back great memories. My grandmother used to make them from scratch all the time for reunions, birthdays, holidays & just when she had a ‘hankering’. They were wonderful!

    I too, have a Bernina 440 which I use all the time. I’m a sewing machine packrat; I also have an Elna Quilter’s Dream, a Babylock Esante, a Singer featherweight, a treadle machine & I just got my grandmother’s, then my mother’s Singer, one of the ones that are as heavy as a boat anchor. I am moving soon & hope to have them all set up in my studio. Guess I can play Musical Sewing Machines.

    1. Carla Marsh

      Hi Mary, I just subscribed to your blog! Love the antique sq angel food cake pan! I have a new Juki 2000Qi and just love it. No fancy stuff but it is phenomenal! Knee lift and scissors w/ a big neck space! I ordered it from Amazon.com and it came in 2 days! Love its scant 1/4″ foot. Miss your shop but I understand. What kind of a longarm did you buy? I still love my Gammill! Can’t wait to see some of your quilting!

  24. Pamela Blessman

    Thanks for your comments on your sewing machine! It helps with my decision. As always, love your posts.


  25. Lorna

    Love my Bernina too….when my mom passed away in ’94 Dad gave me her newest Bernina & he kept her older one (he learned to use it and did his own clothing patching!) When I got my new Bernina 820 a few years ago I passed Mom’s machine on to my daughter….the circle of life! I have a square angel food cake pan that I purchased from a older neighbors estate sale. The pan intrigued me & I love to use it…so much easier to cut the cake from a square pan! Thanks for all the fun chatter in your blogs!

  26. Sharon

    It was interesting to hear your take on Berninas. I did a lot of research too, and bought a Bernina about 15 – 20 years ago. I love my machine, and it has been a workhorse! It’s too heavy for me to move anymore so I bought a small, cheap Brother machine to take to classes and retreats. It’s pretty good, but I still love my Bernina best!

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