May 25, 2012

Vanilla Pound Cake

This is my all-time favorite pound cake to serve plain or dressed-up with some beautiful berries and ice cream - it's so buttery and has the ideal amount of sweetness to it.  It also works great as a (much more delicious!) alternative to shortcake for Strawberry Shortcake.  For Memorial Day, serve with some blueberries and strawberries for the perfect patriotic dessert!

(all ingredients need to be at room temp for best results so set them out in advance)
5 eggs
3 cups sugar
3 cups flour
1 cup milk
1 Tbsp vanilla
1 cup butter
1/2 cup Crisco

(Do NOT preheat oven and ensure you have two shelves available in the oven - a bottom rack and one positioned at the middle of the oven.)

1. Add vanilla to milk.

2. Grease and flour bunt pan (or 3 large loaf pans).

3. Mix butter, Crisco, and sugar until fluffy and pale yellow throughout.

4. Add one egg at a time, mixing well.

5. Add 1 cup of flour, mix until combined, then 1/2 cup of milk, mix again.  Then add another cup of flour, mix until combined, then 1/2 cup of milk, and mix again.  Add last cup of flour and mix for 2 minutes.

6. Place a large pan/baking sheet with 1" water on bottom rack in oven.

7. Pour batter into bunt pan (or divide among 3 large loaf pans) and place on rack in middle of oven.  Turn oven on to 300 degrees F and cook for 1 hour.

8. After an hour, carefully remove pan with water.  Increase oven temp to 350 degrees F and cook an additional 30-35 minutes.

9. Remove pound cake from oven and let cool in bunt pan on baking rack for 15-20 minutes, then turn out of pan onto baking rack and let cool completely before serving.

For best results, after cake completely cools, store in air-tight container for a full day before serving.  The flavor really sets in and the cake is even more-perfectly moist!

Hope you enjoy!  This recipe is so versatile, it's a keeper for all-year-round.  Let me know if you have any cool pound cake serving ideas.


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