07 January 2021

Classic Pound Cake - Half-Pound Cake, Actually

Classic Pound Cake - Half-Pound Cake, Actually / www.delightfulrepast.com

Classic Pound Cake, perfect on its own, can be used in so many ways, making it the most versatile cake of all. The classic proportions of pound cake—a pound each of eggs, flour, sugar, and butter—have been altered over the years, but I wanted to make a cake that held as closely to that formula as possible, only smaller. 

I LOVE experimenting in the kitchen! So my recipe, which calls for approximately a half pound each of the primary ingredients, uses the reverse creaming method rather than the traditional creaming method I used in my Perfect Pound Cake - 3/4-Pound Cake.

Classic Pound Cake - Half-Pound Cake, Actually / www.delightfulrepast.com

Cake flour is supposed to be best for cakes, but I make all my cakes with organic unbleached all-purpose flour. And I haven't had any complaints yet! All my recipes specify a "dip-and-sweep" (scooped and leveled) measure of unsifted flour, which is the most consistent volume measure, weighing about 5 ounces. All my recipes are based on that and will not turn out right if the flour is measured some other way.

I think it's pretty much the perfect pound cake! I loved the texture as well as the flavor. Lemon pound cake is good, too, but I like the classic vanilla pound cake for trifle, which I plan on using half the cake for very soon. In the meantime, tell me about your favorite pound cake and how you like to serve it.

Classic Pound Cake - Half-Pound Cake, Actually / www.delightfulrepast.com

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Classic Pound Cake – Half-Pound Cake, Actually

(Makes one 9x4x4-inch or 9x5x3-inch loaf)

4 large eggs, room temperature
1/4 cup milk, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 2/3 dip-and-sweep cups (8.33 ounces/236 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups (8.75 ounces/248 grams) sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground mace
2 sticks (8 ounces/227 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 Preheat oven to 350F/180C/Gas4. Butter and lightly flour one 9x4x4-inch small pullman pan or 9x5x3-inch loaf tin. Putting a piece of parchment paper in the bottom, and then buttering or spraying the paper, is a good idea if you're worried about sticking.

2 In medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk and vanilla; set aside.

3 In bowl of electric mixer or other large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and mace; mix on low speed for about 30 seconds to “sift” the dry ingredients. Add the butter; mix on low speed to combine. Add half the egg mixture; mix on low speed to combine, then on medium speed for one minute. Add half the remaining egg mixture; mix on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add remaining egg mixture; mix on medium speed for 30 seconds.

4 Pour batter into prepared pan and run a knife through the batter four times to get rid of any air pockets. Bake at 350F/180C/Gas4 for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325F/165C/Gas3 and continue baking for about 50 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a crumb or two.

Note: My favorite timers, the three I use in my kitchen every day, are: ThermoWorks TimeStick (mine is yellow!), Taylor, and ThermoWorks Christopher Kimball Signature Timer.

5 Cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes, then turn onto a wire rack and cool completely. The cooled cake can be wrapped tightly and stored at room temperature for up to 5 days. Can be double-wrapped and frozen for a month; thaw, wrapped, at room temperature.

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