Welcome back ! Well that was more of a shout out to self. It certainly has been ages since I ventured back to this special place. And I bring to you one of the finest creations to grace this page to begin my re-entry back into blogging. Not that I ever stopped making goodies. It was just the photography and recipe and all..
How would you like a wonderful vanilla pound cake with fine tender crumb? The fragrance entices you so wonderfully ( my lab , Maya refused to leave the oven unattended while it was baking ) and then you have these rivers of cinnamon swirl around in them. Fantastic. Moist, tender and heavenly.
An absolute autumn’s delight of a cake this one. A gorgeous tender crumb vanilla pound cake with ribbons of sweet spice cinnamon sugar and cream cheese glaze. This was such a hit a dinner party that I decided to make it again – this time just for my hungry kids !
Serve this warm with a dollop of ice cream if you must. But, I say a steaming cup of coffee , espresso or tea is the best accompaniment for this. A warm inviting slice of heaven and a steaming cup of energy accompanying can take on a motley crew of teenagers, room parent work, PTA, gymnastic classes, robotics, slightly neurotic dog and a full house at home and more. Bring it on !
Cinnamon sugar :
- Granulated sugar : 2/3 cup
- Fine ground cinnamon : 3 Tbsp.
- Fine ground nutmeg : A pinch
Cream Cheese Glaze :
- Cream cheese : 4 Tbsp. ( at room temperature )
- Confectioner’s sugar : 1 -1.5 cups(depending on how sweet you like your icing)
- Pure vanilla extract : 1 Tbsp.
- Milk or Cream : 2 Tbsp.+ as required to thin the glaze or icing.
Vanilla Pound cake:
- Unbleached All purpose flour : 3 cups
- Unsalted butter at room temperature : 2 sticks/ 1 cup/ 16 Tbsp.
- Salt : 1 tsp.
- Baking soda : 1/2 tsp
- Eggs, large, room temperature : 6
- Granulated sugar : 2.5 cup
- Heavy cream or whole milk : 4 Tbsp.
- Sour cream : 1 cup
- Pure Vanilla Extract : 2 Tbsp.
Oven and Bundt pan preparation:
- Preheat your oven to 350° F.
- Generously grease with softened butter and then dust with flour your 10 cup Bundt pan and set aside. Please do take your time to grease and flour the pan. (If you are using an intricate Bundt pan, then please ensure that all nooks and crevices are well accounted for. There is nothing worse than baking a wonderful cake which stubbornly sticks to the pan.)
Making the cinnamon sugar:
- To make the cinnamon sugar, whisk all the ingredients listed in a small separate bowl and keep aside until ready to be used
Baking the pound cake:
- In a large mixing bowl whisk the all purpose flour, baking soda and salt and set aside.
- In a bowl your stand mixer, fit in the paddle attachment and cream the sugar and butter. This process will take about 4-5 minutes. Stop intermittently and scrape the sides of the bowl so all the side splatter butter and sugar get creamed as well. I used the medium-high speed setting on my mixer.
- Add the cup of room temperature sour cream and mix well.
- Add in the vanilla extract and milk / cream and mix well.
- Turn the speed of the mixer to low-medium and add in the eggs 1 at a time. Please ensure the eggs are at a room temperature. And add them one at a time. Take the time to make sure each egg is mixed well. Do not worry if you think there a slight split in the batter. It will all come together when you add the flour. Stop and scrape the sides of the bowl as required to make sure you have a homogeneous mix.
- Once the eggs are all added , add in the flour and mix until just combined. It should just take you a minute or so . DO NOT OVER MIX. Fold the batter by hand gently once or twice to ensure the flour at the bottom is mixed well. This is a heavy batter, so make sure you get to the bottom of the bowl.
Layering and baking the swirl pound cake :
- Scoop in about 1/3 of the total batter into your Bundt pan. Layer about 1/2 of the cinnamon sugar mix and pat gently if needed.
- Next add in the other 1/3 of the batter. I always found that scooping out tiny dollops of the batter , thereby covering the entire cinnamon sugar layer is a better option than trying to layer large amounts of batter. You can always sort of ” join the dots of tiny blobs of batter” to give an even layer as much as possible. Gently tap the pan on the counter to even out. Do not go crazy out banging , then you will have a “cinnamon dispersed” cake and not a “swirl” one.
- Add in the other 1/2 of the sugar and layer with the remaining 1/3 batter similarly.
- Gently tap the Bundt pan.
- Bake at 350 F/ 50-65 minutes. Check with a bamboo skewer (the inserted skewer comes out clean) to ensure cake is baked through.
Unmolding the cake.
- Remove the Bundt pan with cake from oven and cool it in pan for about 10 minutes. Gently run a knife along the edges to loosen the cake. Be very gentle as you do not want to go slicing the cake at the ends.
- Cool another 10 minutes or so in the pan itself. Rushing the process can sometimes ruin your labor love and you might have a partial cake unmolded.
- Then gently invert it out on a wire rack over a stand and cool completely.
Glaze/ icing the cake:
- Using your mixer cream the sugar cream cheese heavy cream or milk, and vanilla extract on high using a whisk attachment. Thin it out more if you would like to pour out the glaze or keep it thick to pipe it out in pastry bag.
- Glaze when very slightly warm or you can wait until it is completely cool to pipe out the cream as well.( Mine was attempted by an eager elementary school kid )
Slice and enjoy heaven on earth !