Oh the grief this cake gave me. You have no idea. I’ve wanted to make pound cake for days and days. I love pound cake. I think it’s amazing and versatile. Last time I made it, I threatened to buy a glass cake stand and put it under a pretty cover. Then, um, a few days ago, I, um, might have, um, bought a glass dome. Therefore, I had to make a pound cake.
Crisis #1: Which cake to make? Browned butter…cream cheese…traditional…lemon…sweetened condensed milk… I polled at least four friends in order to make this decision. Sweetened condensed milk cake won.
Crisis #2: I did not want to turn my oven on. My apartment is on the sixth floor. It gets very hot. Turning on my little flimsy oven is essentially like building a fire in the middle of my kitchen. Craving for pound cake beat the desire for coolness.
Crisis #3: I was out of white sugar. I decided to plow ahead with brown sugar and call it a caramelized pound cake. I love brown sugar and the complex flavors it imparts, so I wasn’t too unhappy about this crisis.
Crisis #4: I misread the ratio of sugar to butter ratio and made very sweet creamed cake base. Solution? Add more butter and make twice as much cake.
Crisis #5: Oops. Now I’m out of butter. Emergency trip to the grocery store. Might as well buy white sugar and make this cake the way the recipe says to, since I’m going to the store for butter either way.
Crisis #6: Friend calls with offer of an open bar. Cake must wait.
Crisis #7: Oh dear. Exam tomorrow. Well, I’ll make cake anyway. Then I’ll put it under a dome. Then I might study anesthesia.
If you want a traditional pound cake, use my traditional recipe. If you want a cake that is moist, slightly sweet and swimming in butter and flavor, make this cake. Drench it sage simple syrup (recipe coming) or red wine syrup poached fruit (recipe also coming.) Toast it for breakfast, freeze it for lunch and crumble it up with yogurt for dinner. It’s pound cake.
Sweet Milk Pound Cake
Adapted from The Sweet Spot via Engineer Baker
Makes 1 bundt cake. Allow 1.5 hours.
2 cups salted butter, room temperature
2 2/3 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1) Preheat oven to 325. Grease a nonstick bundt pan.
2) Beat together the butter and the sugar for three to four minutes, until creamy and pale yellow in color.* Add the sweetened condensed milk and beat together. Add the eggs and the vanilla paste and continue to beat until well combined.
3) Mix in the flour and baking powder. Ensure all of the flour is fully mixed in.
4) Scrape batter into the bundt pan and level it with your spatula. Rap it firmly against a counter to settle it.
5) Bake for 65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
6) Cool in pan for twenty minutes, then on a rack until room temperature.
*The more you beat the butter, the fluffier your cake will be.