Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Brown Sugar Pound Cake
I did not expect to make a cake today. In fact, cake was about the furthest thing from my mind when I was looking at recipes and considering my options. I have more rhubarb to use up so my intention was to make a crumble or crisp using the rest of the rhubarb and the sorry strawberries, and possibly even an apple I have sitting around. In fact, I still might do that tomorrow -- just not today.
The problem was that in my OCD over sucking at pie crust I started looking at various recipes and techniques to see what was out there and found my next attempt (the story is being saved for another blog) -- but my next attempt also calls for some cubes of pound cake. I said something to Chris about the possibility of purchasing a pound cake to use for the recipe and Chris asked me if I was feeling okay. I acknowledged his point and then it occurred to me that there was a brown sugar pound cake recipe in my Southern Cakes book that I have wanted to try since I bought the book (and about a dozen others, but those will wait for another day) and cubes of that would probably work perfectly for tomorrow's recipe. Problem solved.
Now if only I could actually read the recipe correctly. I only realized when I was typing the recipe into the blog (after the cake was in the oven baking) that I had shorted the recipe by a whole cup of brown sugar. Granted, that still meant 1 3/4 cup of brown sugar and another 1/2 cup of white sugar -- but missing an entire cup is pretty significant in terms of flavor. Luckily, the cake still tasted okay despite the mistake and was actually quite nice as a tea cake rather than as a dessert (i.e. super sweet) cake.
3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, softened
one 1-pound box (about 2 3/4 cups) dark or light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
Heat the oven to 325. Spray a 10-inch tube pan with baking spray.
Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl and stir with a fork to mix well. Stir the vanilla into the milk and set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the butter with a mixer at high speed until light and fluffy. Add the brown sugar in 3 batches, and then add all of the white sugar, beating well after each addition.
Add the eggs, one by one, beating well after each addition. Add half the flour, and then half the milk, beating at low speed only until the flour or milk disappears into the batter. Add in the rest of the flour, and then the remaining milk, in the same way.
Quickly scrape the batter into the prepared pan, and bake at 325 for 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until the cake is nicely browned at the edges, springs back when touched lightly at the center, and a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack or a folded kitchen towel for 20 to 30 minutes. Loosen the cake from the pan with a table knife, and turn it out onto a wire rack or a plate to cool completely, top side up.