It’s no secret that we Asians like eating pastries for breakfast (see here, here, here and here). In fact, when I was growing up, it was perfectly acceptable for my dad and I to eat pound cake, milk, and a banana for breakfast. I thought nothing of it, but now I shudder at the thought of pound cake for breakfast.
My husband and I were fortunate enough to attend our city’s Restaurant Week last month and try out a new (to us) restaurant downtown. We had the ability to choose our appetizer, entree and dessert from a prix fixe menu. I saw that “foie gras pound cake” was on there, so I ordered that.
Don’t be confused – there was no duck liver in this pound cake. It was dense and smooth like the consistency of fois gras, but it was 100% pound cake. Oh my heavens – this cake melted in my mouth and made me want more. I couldn’t stop thinking about pound cake all week and finally went on the internet to search for a recipe to try.
I baked the recipe as written, but it came out a bit browner and drier than I had hoped. I even baked it for 7.5 minutes less than instructed, so be sure to check your loaf often so it doesn’t get too dry. I enjoyed the texture, as it was exactly as a pound cake should be, but it wasn’t anything like the foie gras version we had during Restaurant Week. I’ll keep searching for a similar recipe, but in the meantime, this one will do. I can always top it with fruit, ice cream and syrup so the pound cake isn’t too dry.
Vanilla pound cake
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 3 ounces cream cheese room temperature
- 3/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon if you use salted butter
- 1 and 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 5 large eggs at room temperature
- 3 Tablespoons milk of choice
- 1 and 3/4 cups + 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a standard 9x5 loaf pan and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer, cream together the butter, cream cheese, salt, sugar, baking powder, vanilla and almond extract on medium speed until well combined.
- Add the eggs in one at a time, and mix well after each egg to make sure it is fully incorporated. After all the eggs have been added, turn the mixer to high and beat for 3 minutes.
- Turn the mixer down to low and the milk. Then slowly add the flour and mix until just incorporated - do not over mix.
- Transfer the batter into your prepared loaf pan and bake in your preheated oven for 55 minutes.
- While the loaf is baking, you can prepare a sugar topping that will enhance the pound cake. Simply mix 2 TBSP of sugar, 1 teaspoon of water and 1 teaspoon of vanilla together. It will look like syrup.
- Once the loaf has finished baking, pour the syrup onto the pound cake and return to the oven and bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before turning onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- The top center of the pound cake may come out a bit soggy, but that is OK. It will solidify as it cools.