Monday, April 6, 2009

Stella's Sour Cream Pound Cake

This is a very good pound cake with a wonderful velvety texture. One of my mother's classics.

2 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, slightly softened
6 large eggs
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour (sift first, then measure out 3 cups)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 cup good quality dairy sour cream (use a high-quality brand like Breakstone or Daisy; thicker and creamier works better than moister generic brands)
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 tsp. almond extract
1/4 tsp. lemon extract

In large mixer bowl, cream together sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stop and scrape bowl as needed.

Sift together flour, salt, and soda. Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream, beating on medium-low speed after each addition. Add extracts and vanilla; beat well.

Pour batter (it will be thick and fluffy, and it won't actually "pour" like typical cake batter) into greased and floured 10" tube pan or bundt pan. Smooth out top of batter to make it even all around and, because of the batter's thickness, try to ensure air "gaps" don't exist that will create bubbles in the finished product. Bake in 350 oven for at least one hour (my mom used to need to bake it about 1.5 hours in her oven, but that's much too long for my oven); don't underbake. Cake may test done with a toothpick inserted but not have reached the stage that will produce the nicest texture. This may be a trial and error proposition based on the idiosyncracies of your own oven. Cake top may be fully golden brown long before cake is really done baking, so beware. Cover cake top lightly with foil if you're afraid it will overdarken but cake is still not done.

Cool in pan for 15 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely on a rack. When completely cool, the cake can be glazed (chocolate ganache, lemon zest glaze, vanilla glaze -- all are good) or left unglazed, as you prefer.

One interesting variation that my teenage son requests, is to use granulated sugar, vs. flour, when greasing-and-flouring the pan. The sugar lends a subtle, sweet, crusty aspect to the outside of the cake.


Sallie said...

Jane: Your site is wonderful... love the post of pound cake and the one of trip to Michigan. Keep on posting!

Jane said...

Thanks so much, Sallie. This was my very first post and it's nice that it finally received its first comment! :)

I'm so glad you like my blog. I'm having a lot of fun working on it.


Nina said...

Jane--thanks for posting this looks great. I love pound cakes and cant wait to try. Your blog is terrific!