Sunday, May 14, 2006

Brown Sugar Pound Cake

I was in the mood for cake. Nothing fancy or covered in cream. Just good old fashioned cake to have with a cup of tea. I turned to my, now well worn, copy of Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook for ideas. That Martha, she never fails to come up with something good. Her Brown Sugar Pound Cake hit the spot. To wet it a bit, I poached some plums I had lying around otherwise they would never get eaten since I dislike plums unless they're cooked. I took a loaf to work the next day for our tea break and it went down well with the girls.

It's a heavy cake and a little goes a long way. I was concerned it might be to sweet so I altered the recipe slightly and replaced part of the brown sugar with dark muscovado sugar.

Brown Sugar Pound Cake
from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook

Makes 2 loafs

1 c. unsalted butter, softened
3 c. sifted plain flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/4 c. packed light brown sugar
5 large eggs
3/4 c. buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 170C. Butter two 8 1/2-by-4 1/2inch loaf tins; set aside. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

In a bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add eggs one at a time, beating until combined.

Add the reserved flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the buttermilk and beginning and ending with the flour; beat until combined. Divide the batter between the buttered pans, and smooth with an offset spatula.

Bake, rotating the pans halfway through, until cakes are golden brown and a cake tester inserted in the centers comes out clean, about 1 hour. Transfer pans to a wire rack to cool 10 minutes. Turn out cakes onto the rack to cool completely. Cakes can be kept at room temperature, wrapped in plastic, for up to 3 days.

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