For Andy’s birthday, I made three vanilla cakes. A classic pound cake, a vanilla birthday cake and an updated (or fluffier) pound cake. I loved them all. All. Andy liked the vanilla birthday cake which I’ll write about another time. This pound cake though is classic in its dense crumb and solid mass. Easy to make and great really for any occasion. Dress it up with berries and whipped cream or serve it plain. It is sure to delight.
classic vanilla pound cake (from Rose Levy Beranbaum’s The Cake Bible):
3 tablespoons room temp milk
half of a vanilla bean
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour (or 5.25 ounces if you have a scale)
3/4 cup sugar (or 5.25 ounces)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (use half if using table salt)
13 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 8×4 loaf pan with parchment and grease. Or us a 6 cup tube or bundt pan – make sure you grease and flour.
Heat the milk with the seeds of the vanilla bean. Scald. Then let cool.
Combine the milk, eggs and vanilla extract.
In the mixer with paddle attachment, combine the dry ingredients and mix for 30 seconds.
On the lowest speed, add the butter and half of the egg mixture…once the ingredients are moistened increase to medium and beat for about a minute. Add the rest of the egg mixture in 2 batches and beat for 20 seconds after each addition. Scrape down the bowl, and mix again.
Scoop batter into prepared pan and bake until done. Toothpick should come out JUST clean. This time will vary based on your pan but up to an hour – but please, as usual, check before and often. After about 30 minutes, lay some tin foil on top of the cake to prevent a too brown cake.
It should split up the middle btw. And if not, that is ok too!
I made a simple glaze by mixing confectioners sugar and milk and a dash of vanilla. Yum.