Easy and Traditional Pound Cake Recipe from Scratch
Have you ever heard of a pound cake recipe? The pound cake is a traditional cake made with a pound of flour, a pound of eggs, a pound of butter and a pound of sugar. You’ve probably already baked a perfect pound cake since this is a very traditional recipe (just like a vanilla cake or a carrot cake), quite old fashion and for this reason delicious and evergreen. Read the whole article to get tips and advice on how to prepare the best pound cake recipe!
As I stated above, a pound cake is traditionally made with a pound of each of the ingredients; in reality, today the ratio has changed and the doses can possibly not be always the same. In my easy pound cake, for example, I use less sugar and a bit more vanilla extract.
The result, although, is always the same: a good pound cake has to be buttery and moist with a crumbly crust on top.
The most important thing in making a pound cake is the technique: very few ingredients are used and this means they have to be mixed perfectly and carefully.
First thing first: sugar and butter have to be mixed so to form a creamy, fluffy and pale mixture. Make sure you scrap the surface of the bowl while you’re creaming the ingredients!
When the cream is ready, add one egg at a time always mixing down to top so to avoid lumps; flour has to be added at the end, making sure not to overwork the batter otherwise the cake would come out tough. Only at the very end, salt and vanilla are added to give an extra kick to the cake.
It’s absolutely important that all the ingredients are at room temperature
Have you noticed I haven’t mentioned any baking powder or baking soda?
This is not a mistake: a perfect pound cake recipe doesn’t require any raising agent to rise because it’s all down the very first step of the process, mixing butter and sugar. If you mix these 2 ingredients well and slowly, the mix will incorporate so much air it will be enough to help the cake rising while cooking.
Just make sure you follow the steps carefully and you allow the cake to cook in the oven without opening the door, or your pound cake will collapse.
A perfect pound cake is better baked in a tube pan with straight and high sides because of the air incorporated into the batter. You may bake you pound cake into a loaf pan, but you may end up with a dry and hard cake.
Making a classic pound cake is amazing and the whole experience will make you feel in a different time and space and will help you in mastering the art of a classic cake, prepared using old techniques.
Ingredients for for a 10-cup tube pan
- 600 grams unsalted butter softened
- 500 grams granulated sugar
- 6 eggs large
- 600 grams cake flour
- 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons salt
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F and grease a 10-cup tube pan with butter or baking spray;
- Place the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl, and whisk together on medium-high speed until fluffy (at least 5 minutes);
- Add the eggs, one at a time, making sure they incorporate before adding the next;
- Add the flour, 100 grams at a time, mixing until just barely combined;
- Fold in the vanilla and salt, and transfer the batter to the pan;
- Bake for 60 to 70 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean;
- Let it cool in the oven for 30 minutes, then remove from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely;
- Slice the pound cake and serve it with cream, ice cream, chocolate sauce or with a but of sugar on top.
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 1.2 hours
Total time: 1.4 hours
How to serve this cake?
This pound cake recipe is so versatile it can be served with anything you want: chocolate sauce, whipped cream, a bit of sugar, mascarpone cream, fresh fruit, and so on.
Pound Cake Recipe: how to store it
- This cake will keep at room temperature for 3-4 days;
- You can store your pound cake in the refrigerator for up to 10 days;
- You can freeze your pound cake and defrost it slowly in the fridge when you want to serve it.
Pound Cake Recipe: tips and advice
- You can use cake flour for your cake. No strange calculations involved, just a simple 1:1 conversion from whole flour to cake flour;
- Make sure your cake is not overcooked: check the status of your cake at one hour then keep check it every 2-3 minutes until you’re not satisfied with the result. Remember: a pound cake is moist on the inside;
- If you cake is too dry and overcooked, just wet it with some lemon juice or some milk. You can also open and fill with whipped cream so to avoid it becoming too hard;
- Don’t be alarmed if your cake takes longer than 60 minutes: ovens are not created equally and so are ingredients, so you cake may take a bit more to get cooked and it’s fine. A pound cake should be baked low and slow;
- If you want, you can cheat and add a little bit of baking powder that will help this easy pound cake rise;
- You can give a different flavour to your pound cake by replacing the vanilla with lemon juice and extract and some zest. Same for orange.
How to keep your cake from sticking to the pan
To prevent your cake from sticking to the pan, make sure you follow the following things when baking pound cakes:
- Choose a pan with a non-stick coating;
- Grease the pan thoroughly and add a coating of flour to help the batter clinging to the sides without collapsing (flour is not always necessary, but it helps a bit in the case of cakes not containing raising agents);
- Cool off the cake for 20 minutes before removing it from the pan; once it’s cool, slide a table knife down the sides of the pan, tap the pan a few times and shake it gently to help loosen the cake then into the pan. Finally, invert the cake into the rack and let it cool completely.
How to use your stale or dry pound cake
- Slice your cake, grill it and serve with fresh fruit;
- Cut the cake into cubes and prepare a truffle with custard and whipped cream;
- Slice your cake, fill it with ice cream and you’ll have the perfect ice cream sandwich.