Genoise Sponge Layer Cake.

This is the basic cake to use for light layered cakes. It’s also a test of the skills of the baker. Sponge cake is a study in how much air can be beaten into the batter while preserving a rich flavor. This recipe comes from the late, brilliant baker Lonnie Knisley, for many years the pastry chef at Andrea’s, the Monteleone, and numerous other local restaurants. To make it chocolate, add a half cup of cocoa powder.

Light, layered sponge cake (also known as Genoise)

  • 5 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 6 1/2 oz. sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 6 1/2 oz. cake flour
  • 1/4 tsp. cornstarch
  • Pinch salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

1. Blend the eggs, egg yolks, and sugar in a mixer bowl with a wire whip attachment until the mixture doubles in volume–about 15 minutes on high speed. Just before stopping the mixer, add the vanilla and mix in.

2. Sift together the cake flour, cornstarch and salt. Fold the dry mixture into the egg mixture with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, just until blended.

3. Coat two 10-inch round cake pans with shortening. Pour the batter into the pans and put them immediately into a preheated 350-degree oven. Bake
until tops are springy to the touch–about 45-50 minutes.

4. Remove the cakes from the pans and cool on a wire rack. When cool, use a long serrated knife to slice off the tops of the cakes, and then into as many as three layers.

Makes two cakes.

More to come. . .