Sunday, January 13, 2008
JB's Cream Cheese Pound Cake
I have not had much luck with pound cake recipes in the past, they mostly come out dry, despite the fact that I have carefully read the instructions to keep the butter at room temp and to cream the butter and sugar for a long time, and to mix for several minutes after adding each egg. The Martha Stewart pound cake recipe was a total disaster, the Dorie Greenspan pound cake wasn't bad, but it was pretty dry and overall a bit of a disappointment.
After each of my attempts, JB mentioned that he had a great cream cheese pound cake recipe, but for whatever reason it took me a long time to finally get it from him. Then, even after he gave me the recipe, it sat on my fridge ignored for several more months. Then he made the pound cake himself and gave me a piece. It was, without a doubt, the best pound cake I have ever had. Sweet and moist, and yet still dense like a pound cake should be. Awesome.
Tonight I made the pound cake for myself -- and despite a mistake that should have ruined the recipe (I forgot to add the sugar to the butter and cream cheese and ended up adding it after the eggs) -- it turned out fantastic. One of the most interesting things about this recipe is that you don't preheat the oven -- something I've never seen before. I'm not really sure what the cold oven does for the cake, but if it works, why mess with it?
8 oz cream cheese, softened
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
3 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups cake flour (or all-purpose flour minus 6 tbsp)
*note -- do not preheat oven*
In a stand mixer, cream together the butter and cream cheese, then the sugar. When smooth, add the eggs one at a time, mixing well before adding the next (2-3 minutes between each egg.) Add the vanilla and mix until incorporated. Gradually add the flour, mixing only until incorporated. Place the batter into a greased and floured tube or bundt pan. Place the pan into the COLD oven, set the oven to 325 and bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes, or until golden brown and cracked on top. The top of the finished cake will crack and separate a bit from the rest of the cake, but as JB points out, that's the best part so it's all good.