Pound cakes have been around since the 18th century. Originally, they were made from a simple recipe – one pound of each main ingredient – butter, flour, sugar and eggs. This combination, gave a much heavier version of the pound cakes that we know. Today, because we are more health conscious, the ingredients have been changed to use less flour, butter, sugar and eggs.
I remember when my mom and older sister would bake pound cakes, the days before electric hand mixers and KitchenAid, we would take turns helping to mix the sugar and the butter (the creaming method) until it became a smooth and light batter. My mom would be so worried that her cake would “fall” or deflate in the oven, if the batter wasn’t just right.
When I decided to bake this cake (my first), I was very intimidated because I remember all the things my mom said could go wrong when baking a cake. But my using this simple recipe, I baked my first pound cake yesterday and it baked up moist, light and delicious!
(Recipe from Joyofbaking.com)
3 large eggs, room temperature
3 tablespoons milk, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (150 grams) sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar
13 tablespoons (1/2 cup + 1/3 cup) (185 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Butter or spray with a non stick vegetable spray, a 9 x 5 x 3 inch (23 x 13 x 8 cm) loaf pan. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper and butter or spray the paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, and vanilla extract.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, with the paddle attachment (or with a hand mixer), place the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar) and mix on low speed for about 30 seconds or until blended. Add the butter and half of the egg mixture. Mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat for about one minute to aerate and develop the cake’s structure. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Gradually add the remaining egg mixture, in 2 additions, beating about 30 seconds after each addition to incorporate the egg and strengthen the cake’s structure.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with an offset spatula or the back of a spoon. Bake for about 55 to 65 minutes or until the cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If you find the cake browning too much as it bakes, cover with a piece of lightly buttered aluminum foil after about 30 minutes.
Remove the cake from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool for about 10 minutes. Remove the cake from the pan and cool completely on a lightly buttered wire rack.
The Pound Cake can be covered and stored for several days at room temperature, for one week when refrigerated, or it can be frozen for two months.