pound cake

The kids tasted pound cake for the first time last week and begged me to serve it at home. I had never baked a pound cake before and my past recollection was a dense, dry, heavy dessert. I found a recipe on Epicurious… and apparently, this was an Elvis favorite.

Ugh, the ingredients. Just reading them, I think I gained a few pounds. I wasn’t sure what a tube pan was, so I used my angel food cake pan. I also have a bundt pan, but wasn’t sure I wanted a pound cake with pretty ridges. Pound cake is just that… pound cake – doesn’t need to be pretty.

The kids seemed to really enjoy it. Dane wanted his plain, but I also made an almond drizzle to add. I used some of our fresh berries – wonderful, and in their glory right now. Mmm. Not bad.

Elvis Presley’s Favorite Pound Cake (adapted from Gourmet)
Makes 10 to 12 servings

Ingredients

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened, plus additional for buttering pan
3 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising; sift before measuring) plus additional for dusting
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups sugar
7 large eggs, at room temperature 30 minutes
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup heavy cream

Special equipment: a 10-inch tube pan (4 1/2 inches deep; not with a removable bottom) or a 10-inch bundt pan (3 1/4 inches deep; 3-qt capacity)

Preparation

Put oven rack in middle position, but do not preheat oven.

Generously butter pan and dust with flour, knocking out excess flour.

Sift together sifted flour (3 cups) and salt into a bowl. Repeat sifting into another bowl (flour will have been sifted 3 times total).

Beat together butter (2 sticks) and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes in a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment or 6 to 8 minutes with a handheld mixer. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, then beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low and add half of flour, then all of cream, then remaining flour, mixing well after each addition. Scrape down side of bowl, then beat at medium-high speed 5 minutes. Batter will become creamier and satiny.

Spoon batter into pan and rap pan against work surface once or twice to eliminate air bubbles. Place pan in (cold) oven and turn oven temperature to 350°F. Bake until golden and a wooden pick or skewer inserted in middle of cake comes out with a few crumbs adhering, 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Cool cake in pan on a rack 30 minutes. Run a thin knife around inner and outer edges of cake, then invert rack over pan and invert cake onto rack to cool completely.

Serve plain, with a dollop of whipped cream or add fresh berries and a drizzle of almond frosting, if you may.  Enjoy.

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