Monday, July 22, 2013

Cream Cheese Pound Cake

Cream Cheese Pound Cake - made July 13, 2013 from Rosie's All-Butter, Fresh Cream, Sugar-Packed, No-Holds-Barred Baking Book by Judy Rosenberg
Don't let the modest appearance of this cake fool you.  If you like tender, almost melt-in-your-mouth cakes, this delivers.  Despite cream cheese being a headliner in the title, you can't really taste the tang of the cream cheese very much.  Instead, the cream cheese contributes to the soft texture of the cake.  Interestingly, this cake rose pretty high in the pan despite not having any chemical leavening.  Instead, the air incorporated from beating all the ingredients together really contributed to both the height and tender crumb.  The cake did deflate a bit once I took it out of the oven but it doesn't fall like a souffle.  It simply isn't as high as anymore once it stops baking.
It did form a bit of a crust on the outside due to the eggs being beaten so thoroughly once they're mixed into the batter, almost like the crispness of a meringue.  That made it a little tricky to get out of the pan cleanly, hence the humble outside of the cake.  I could've dressed it up or covered it with a little glaze but I liked this cake plain.  The art of a good recipe and a good cake is when it doesn't need anything to fancy it up but simply tastes good on its own.  This would be one of those cakes.  If you absolutely want to dress it up in some way, I'd suggest serving with fresh summer berries, both for color and flavor.

3 cups cake flour
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature, or warmed lightly in microwave
3 cups sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
6 large eggs, at room temperature
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.  Lightly grease a 10-inch tube pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Sift the cake flour into a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Cream the butter, cream cheese, sugar and vanilla in a medium-size mixing bowl with the mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy about 2 minutes.  Stop the mixer once or twice to scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time to the butter mixture and mix on medium speed after each addition until blended, about 10 seconds.  Scrape the bowl each time.  When all the eggs are added, mix 30 seconds more.
  5. Stir the flour gently into the batter with a rubber spatula.  Then mix on low speed for 5 seconds, scrape the bowl, and blend until the batter is smooth and even, 5 to 10 seconds.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.  Bake the cake on the center oven rack until golden and firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 35 minutes.
  7. Let cake cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes before inverting and unmolding gently.  Let cool completely.

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