I had a total fail with the Pomegranate Jewel Cake! I used a 26cm tin greased and lined as per instructions. It rose beautifully after 30 mins but was nowhere near cooked so I covered with loose foil and checked again every ten minutes and had to cook for a further 30 mins - the mixture was very generous. It sank horribly after I put the juice on it and remained wet in the tin. I turned it out with some difficulty, it tasted good, but Nigella, what did I do wrong please?
NIgella's Pomegranate Jewel Cake from FEAST) is a gluten-free cake that is leavened with air - via whisked egg yolks and whisked egg whites. This gives a tender crumb and a delicate structure that can sink if the cake is not quite cooked through. It is possible that the egg whites were over beaten. When this happens the cake could rise a lot and then as it is gluten free it can't sustain the structure and sinks back. In extremis the egg whites can start to break down and partially liquefy and this could possibly have caused a problem with the cake batter. It is better to slightly under whisk the egg whites than risk whisking too much and also make sure that all of the ingredients (especially the eggs) are at room temperature before you start.
We note that the pan size of 26cm is larger than the recommended size of 23cm, though this usually means that the cake cooks more quickly. If the oven was slightly too hot or too cold then this will also affect the baking. If the oven is too hot then the outside burns before the centre is baked. If too cool then it can take a long time to bake the cake. Switch on the oven before you start mixing the cake batter, to make sure that it is properly heated by the time you are ready to bake the cake and if in doubt you can check the oven with an oven thermometer.