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Passover Orange Sponge Cake

Servings: 10
Light, airy and moist, this traditional Passover sponge cake boasts the delicious flavor of fresh oranges. If desired, the cake can be sliced and transformed into French toast.

1/2 cup matzo cake meal
1/2 cup potato starch
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
Zest of 1 orange and 1 lemon
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
6 eggs, separated

Position a rack in the lower third of oven and preheat to 325 degrees F/160 degrees C.

Over a sheet of waxed paper, sift together the matza cake meal, potato starch and salt; set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice, lemon juice and the zests; set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat together 3/4 cup of the sugar and the oil on medium speed until combined, about 1 minute. Add the egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Reduce the speed to low and add the matza mixture in three additions, alternating with the orange juice mixture and beginning and ending with the matza. Beat each addition just until incorporated, then beat for 1 minute more. Remove the bowl from the mixer and set aside.

In a clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium-high speed until soft peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and beat until stiff peaks form, 3 to 5 minutes. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the whites into the egg yolk mixture just until combined.

Pour the batter into an angel food cake pan. Bake until the cake is golden brown and springs back when touched in the center, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes.

Immediately invert the pan onto its feet or the neck of a wine bottle and let cool completely. Run a thin-bladed knife around the outer sides of the pan and around the inside of the tube to loosen the cake. Invert the pan onto a cake plate and lift off the pan.

Makes 10 servings.

Source: The Gourmet Jewish Cook by Judy Zeidler (William Morrow and Co., Inc., 1999).

Date: March 14, 2006