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Help choose a pound cake recipe, to accompany ice cream.

bella_sarda Jun 28, 2011 12:13 PM

I'm choosing between these two, both from Smitten Kitchen, because I trust her recipes, but other pound cake recipes welcome (I own the Cake Bible and could see using one of her recipes). I prefer a recipe for a 10-inch tube pan so I don't have to adjust quantities or cooking times.

Cream cheese pound cake (I'm skipping the coulis and going with strawberry ice cream instead)

Lighter, airy pound cake (a James Beard version

If anyone has made either of these cakes, I'd love a report.


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  1. hotoynoodle RE: bella_sarda Jun 28, 2011 01:21 PM

    my go-to is the moosewood version, which is very buttery and fairly dense. classic to me.

    1. Axalady RE: bella_sarda Jun 28, 2011 02:26 PM

      This cold oven cake - Elvis Presley's Favorite Pound Cake - has never failed me.


      6 Replies
      1. re: Axalady
        bella_sarda RE: Axalady Jul 4, 2011 11:44 AM

        Thanks for the replies, hotoy and Axalady. FYI I wound up making the cream cheese pound cake from Smitten Kitchen, linked in my original post, and it was absolutely fabulous. Very moist, with an incredibly tender, melt-in-your-mouth crumb, but it still had the density you want in a pound cake. Excellent flavor and excellent "crust".

        1. re: bella_sarda
          biondanonima RE: bella_sarda Jul 4, 2011 03:42 PM

          Thanks for posting that recipe - it looks amazing. How have the leftovers fared? I am looking for ideas that will last a few days at room temp without drying out and this will definitely be a contender if the leftovers keep.

          1. re: biondanonima
            bella_sarda RE: biondanonima Jul 5, 2011 08:17 AM

            Well, we had a big party and ate almost all of the cake the day it was baked. I ate the final slice for breakfast the next morning, after holding at room temp over night. It was no less moist and delicious than the night before. I grilled it briefly in a pan with a little butter to brown the sides, and served with sauteed bananas and greek yogurt. Best breakfast I've had in a while. It didn't need this treatment, however, as I snuck a bite before putting it in the pan. Really an outstanding cake and I imagine it would keep well for a few days.

            1. re: bella_sarda
              biondanonima RE: bella_sarda Jul 5, 2011 09:16 AM

              Thanks for the info - I look forward to trying it soon!

              1. re: biondanonima
                bella_sarda RE: biondanonima Jul 5, 2011 10:23 AM

                FYI I recommend using high quality butter. I used Plugra', but any Grade AA butter from the US (such as Cabot) or good European butter will work. Probably would not recommend a cultured butter, however, since it has a strong flavor that not everyone will like in a sweet dish.

          2. re: bella_sarda
            magiesmom RE: bella_sarda Jul 4, 2011 05:04 PM

            I love that cake. and it keeps beautifully. Also freezes well.

        2. greygarious RE: bella_sarda Jul 4, 2011 05:02 PM

          Cook's Illustrated's Cold Oven Pound Cake recipe is great if you like a lot of crust. Personally, I like Sweet Potato Pound Cake. Not sure where I got the recipe.

          1. t
            Tripper RE: bella_sarda Jul 4, 2011 05:08 PM

            Almond pound cake made with almond paste is so good with strawberries...Family Circle Magazine.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Tripper
              greygarious RE: Tripper Jul 4, 2011 09:37 PM

              There's a good pound cake recipe on the can of Solo almond filling. Lots of butter, and it keeps well in the refrigerator for weeks.

              1. re: Tripper
                JoanN RE: Tripper Jul 6, 2011 12:50 PM

                Speaking of almond pound cake made with almond paste, this Crystal Almond Pound Cake from Flo Braker is simply stupendous. The citrus glaze really sets it off. I love this cake so much, I can never bring myself to try another pound cake recipe. I should probably get over it--but I doubt that I will.


                ETA: Just noticed that this recipe is the original of the one fmogul referred to as a Bittman recipe below. Before it was Bittman, before it was Grandaisy, it was Flo Braker's--and her original recipe is quite different from the Bittman adaptation of the Grandaisy adaptation. Try the original. It's really outstanding.

              2. ipsedixit RE: bella_sarda Jul 4, 2011 09:59 PM

                Go ahead and slap me.

                But if I want pound cake with my ice cream, I toast up a thick slice of Sara Lee Pound Cake.

                1 Reply
                1. re: ipsedixit
                  mnosyne RE: ipsedixit Jul 4, 2011 10:06 PM

                  Nobody doesn't love Sara Lee!

                2. f
                  fmogul RE: bella_sarda Jul 5, 2011 02:29 AM

                  Trust me, you can't get easier and better than Bittmann's almond-citrus poundcake (assuming you like almonds and citrus). I skip the OJ and just use lemon. It's all about the 'pour' -- the dousing with lotsa lemon juice after it's baked. You just can't go wrong. Absurdly easy, too -- made in a food processor, no muss, no fuss. It comes from a bakery near my office, and I once plunked down $4 a slice to see if theirs is better than mine. It isn't! http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/25/din...

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: fmogul
                    bella_sarda RE: fmogul Jul 5, 2011 08:22 AM

                    This looks interesting, but seems to depart a bit too much from standard pound cake for my taste. Only 1.5 sticks of butter? The almond flavor must be very strong, which could be delicious but not if you want a classic, plain pound cake.

                    1. re: fmogul
                      magiesmom RE: fmogul Jul 5, 2011 04:24 PM

                      really twice as much sugar as flour?

                      1. re: magiesmom
                        bella_sarda RE: magiesmom Jul 6, 2011 09:22 AM

                        Yes, I was surprised by the high sugar content, but the cake did not seem at all too sweet to me. Remember that it has 3 sticks of butter (3/4 pound), plus 8 ounces of cream cheese, which is 20 ounces of butter and cream cheese combined. 3 cups of sugar equals about 21 ounces, so the ratio of sugar to butter/cheese is close to 1:1. Three cups of flour = 13.5 ounces (based on 4.5 ounces per cup, although some use the standard of 5 ounces flour per cup), so yes it has less flour relative to the other ingredients compared to the standard pound cake recipe. I think this is what makes the cake moister and less dense than the traditional recipe. But the sugar is not really twice as much as the flour, it's rather in a 3:2 ratio roughly (a bit more than 50% more sugar by weight than flour). With only 6 eggs, that's about 11 ounces of eggs, so the egg content is also lower relative to other ingredients than in the original pound cake 1:1:1:1 rendition.

                        1. re: bella_sarda
                          biondanonima RE: bella_sarda Jul 6, 2011 10:01 AM

                          I think magiesmom was referring to the Bittman recipe, which has 3c plus 2T sugar to only 1.5c flour, which seems like a lot to me too. Of course, the almond paste provides some of the bulk that flour would normally provide in this recipe, so perhaps that's why there's so little flour in comparison to sugar.

                          1. re: biondanonima
                            Caitlin McGrath RE: biondanonima Jul 6, 2011 12:13 PM

                            Only 2 cups of sugar go into the cake in the Bittman recipe, though. The other 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons are cooked with lemon and orange juice to make the syrup that is poured over the cake. That's still a lot of sugar in terms of sweetness, when you consider that almond paste is over 50% sugar, but not as strange from a structural perspective.

                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                              biondanonima RE: Caitlin McGrath Jul 6, 2011 12:22 PM

                              Oops, I didn't read the directions so I didn't see that there was a syrup! Interesting about the almond paste though - I have never cooked with almond paste so I didn't realize it was so heavily sweetened. I am certainly intrigued by this recipe but I agree that it doesn't exactly fit the bill when one wants a traditional plain pound cake.

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