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pound cake report (long)

smokey | Feb 9, 2006 09:40 AM

Yep, so while other hounds are busily perfecting shortbread cookies with lemoncreme filling (hi noodles!), clementine cakes (hello petradish!) and almond paste crostadas (hello funwithfood!), I've developed a recent interest in the pound cake.

(Actually, what happened was I got some kind of upsetting news last night, and that threw me into baking mode. At another site that shall remain nameless, there was a thread on pound cake and it got me thinking.)

Anyway, I made a pound cake using the recipe from the Best Recipe. There were a few (small) modifications (e.g. I was short about a Tb of butter, I don't have a loaf pan the right size, but I do have a 8c bundt cake-type pan, etc.), but all in all, I thought it was good, if not great. Below is my very paraphrased version of recipe.

Beat 2 sticks butter warmed but still cooler than room temp until they are a bit shiny (I think they estimate 30 secs or so). Over the course of 30 secs or so, with mixer going add 9 and 1/3 oz sugar (I used a mix of regular and superfine [thanks carblover!]). Beat together on med-high until almost white, super fluffy (they estimate 4-5 minutes, I think I was happier with the results I saw around 8-9 minutes). Crack 3 eggs, add 3 egg yolks (all at room temp), 1.5 tsp vanilla and 1.5 tsp water. Mix them together. Slowly add them to the butter/sugar mix while mixer continues to go on med to med-high speed. They analogize this to making mayonaise--you're trying to get the butter/sugar to absorb as much of the egg mixture as you can. They don't tell you how long to do this, but I got it good and well incorporated. Add 1/8 tsp. sugar. In thirds, fold in 1.5 cups (I think, I used the weight and I'm not sure i remember the weight correctly-- 6oz?) cake flour, sifted. Pour into prepared pan and cook at 325 degrees for 70-80 minutes. Since I used a tube pan, I checked it at 60 minutes and declared it done.

They (admit) that they borrowed a technqiue from Flo Braker for incorporating the eggs into the butter/sugar, and I remain, as always, in awe of Flo Braker. Plus, I am reminded that technique can be everything in baking. This method got a great rise out of my pound cake (much better than I expected), but I actually think I would have preferred a slightly denser cake. Maybe no water next time? I like the flavor, and the absence of chemical leaveners in a pound cake. They have mods for adding lemon zest, etc., that I think would be quite good (if I decide to do this again).

Sorry no pics. It wasn't very pretty coming out. The pan is actually (I think) meant for chiffon cakes, so there's no teflon, and in spite of vigorous application of fat and flour, there was so much (oh, gorgeous crust!) that stuck to the pan that it wasn't very pretty. If I had had an oz of butter left in my house, I would have made a chocolate glaze to cover it up. Oh, well.

Anybody have a favorite pound cake recipe to share?

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