Friday, June 4, 2010

Pound Cake

I think I've finally broken the bad baking spell that had been cast upon me the past 2 days!
I can't say enough wonderful things about this cake. It's light and airy,it has just the right sweetness and it's moist inside with a lovely kind of crust on the outside.
It's a recipe from the January 2006 issue of Martha Stewart's Magazine, "Living". The article was called "A Year in Cakes" and this cake was for July. The actual name is Berry Pound Cakes with Whipped Cream Ribbons. (The cake for June was one I could make for my College graduate..but he has big plans for Mom to make a Hungarian Dobos Torte Cake that he's been requesting for a very long time..about the past 4 years, and I think he deserves it!)
This cake caught my eye because I was looking for a simple basic pound cake for tomorrow. I'm setting up a table at a Strawberry Festival and I wanted to make something to go with fresh strawberries and this cake is perfect!

I mean, not that ribbons of whipped cream wouldn't be perfect, too! But the weather's supposed to be very hot again and being outside in the heat with whipped cream? Doesn't sound like a good idea! However, I urge you to try this recipe and since you'd most likely have a refridgerator nearby..go ahead and make the whipped cream!
Begin by whisking your flour, baking powder and salt. Then set aside.

Place the butter, sugar and vanilla in a mixer bowl and mix til pale and fluffy.
Then add the eggs, one at a time.
Add the flour mixture in 2 batches, alternating with the milk.
Look at that beautiful batter!

Pour the batter into 2 prepared loaf pans ( or if you're like me and you only have one loaf pan, pour the other half of the batter into smaller loaf pans, although I should have used 4 smaller loaf pans instead of 3 pans. The batter spilled over and made a bit of mess in my oven.)
Bake til dark golden and tester comes out clean, about 55 to 60 minutes.

Berry Pound Cakes ( from Martha Stewart's January2006 issue of "Living")
Makes 2 loaf cakes

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter,softened, plus more for pans
2 3/4 cups AP flour
1/2 cup cake flour ( not self-rising)
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
3 large eggs plus 1 large egg white
1 cup whole milk
For whipped cream topping:
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 tbsp. confectioners sugar
1 cup fresh blueberries
1 cup fresh raspberries
Preheat oven to 350.
Butter two 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" loaf pans. Line each with parchment paper, allowing a 1" overhang on long sides. ( I actually allowed more). Butter parchment. Set aside.
1. Whisk flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
2. Into a mixer bowl fitted with the paddle attachment, put the butter, granulated sugar and vanilla and mix on medium speed til pale and fluffy, about 3 to 4 minutes.
3. Mix in eggs and egg white, one at a time.
4. Reduce speed to low and add flour in 2 batches, alternating with the milk.
5. Divide batter evenly between prepared pans.
6. Bake til dark golden and a cake tester inserted in center comes out clean, about 55 to 60 minutes.
7. Let cake cool on wire rack 15 minutes, then lift cakes out and cool completely on rack. Trim tops of cakes level.
*Cakes can be stored at room temp., covered, up to 1 day.
Put cream and confectioners sugar into the clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on medium-high speed til soft peaks form.
Transfer whipped cream to a pastry bag fitted with a leaf tip ( such as Ateco #113).
Pipe a ruffled pattern on tops of cakes.
Pile blueberries on center of one cake and raspberries on center of the other cake.

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