Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Victorian (half) Pound Cake

My entry for next week's Victorian themed Clandestine Cake Club  will be a Victorian Pound Cake.  I'm using this recipe as my base.

On Sunday I decided to tie in practising my cake with needing to make a cake for Mother's day, but I was a bit daunted by the quantity of ingredients - 450g of butter is huge.  So I made it in half measures - a Half Pound Cake.

Ingredients
250g unsalted butter
250g self raising flour
250g caster sugar
5 eggs
pinch salt
zest of 1 lemon
cap of brandy

Method
I pre-heated the oven to 180, and greased my cake tin.  Then I opted to cheat a little, in the absence of a Kitchen Aid Mixer, so I melted my butter a bit, then worked at it with a wooden spoon until it resembled cream.  I then added the sugar, creamed together, then sieved in the flour.



I added each egg one at a time, combining it with the rest of the mixture.  I didn't have much brandy left, so I opted for just a cap of brandy, pinch of salt and lastly added the lemon zest.  Adding the lemon instantly lifted the scent of the cake - and I was worried it would be too lemony...

I poured the mixture in the tin, and then left to bake in the oven for 45 minutes.  I tested the cake with a skewer and it came out clean, although it was singing still slightly.

(I think the term "singing" is a Yorkshire thing, not many people understand what I mean when I say it, basically it's listening to the bubbling and crackling of the cake, if it's singing loudly then it isn't cooked.)


Our cooker is fan assisted, so one without a fan would possibly take 50-55 minutes to cook.


I was pretty impressed by the look and texture of the cake.  It was soft and springy to touch, but when you cut into it you could see the top had formed a slightly thin crust.


The moistness of the cake was almost perfect - I personally prefer them just a wee bit more moist, but I'm told it was just right - I guess it's down to taste really.  The lemon just accentuated the flavour of the cake, it didn't dominate.

I was really happy with my cake, and will be going for a full, artery busting, heart stopping Pound Cake on Sunday - I hope I have a tin big enough to accommodate!

I have to admit to having a tiny mishap - I used a springform baking tin, but didn't grease the bottom enough, so where it came off the sides lovely, it ended up stuck to the bottom, and I had to slice it out!  Oops.  I know for next time though....