Happy New Year! I know the first month of the new year is almost over but I haven't yet acknowledged that we are in 2014. Shouldn't we all have flying cars by now?? No? Hmmm...
Well, the new semester has started for me. I've been in school for 3 weeks now and I'm having trouble finding my motivation. What better way to procrastinate than to talk about cake?!?!?
This cake is the January pick for the Cake Slice Bakers. I ended up making this cake twice. The original recipe is for an old fashioned pound cake and the author, Carole Walter, suggests different options for changing the cake up. The first time I made the cake I went with the "nutty pound cake" option which calls for nuts and a hot liquor-based syrup to be poured over the warm cake. Sounds good right?? Unfortunately, I found the texture to be all wrong. The syrup didn't seep all the way to the bottom of the cake making some parts soggy and others dry. I was really disappointed.
But I refused to give up! I was talking with a friend and she sent me pictures of her husband and his family making pure cane syrup. That gave me an idea! Instead of the milk the original recipe called for, I decided to substitute maple syrup and add some pecans (because maple and pecan just goes together, duh!). Boy am I glad that I tried this cake again! It was fluffy, flavorful, and delicious!
I'm used to pound cakes being super dense but this one wasn't. It was crumbly and soft. Sadly, my pictures aren't great. I ended up taking the cake to a friend's house for a party and had to snatch up a piece and take some quick pictures before the cake was devoured.
All in all, I am very happy with how my second rendition of this cake turned out. I suggest making it! I wish I still had some. I would heat up a slice and slab a little butter on that bad boy. Mmmmmm....
Okay. Back to work! And don't forget to jump to the bottom of this post to see how the other Cake Slice Bakers fared with this cake!
Maple Pecan Pound Cake
2 1/4 cups sifted cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
3/4 cup chopped pecans
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray loaf pan (9x5) with baking spray and set aside.
2. Sift together cake flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside flour mixture.
3. Cream together butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer, on medium speed, until light and fluffy, about 6-8 minutes.
4. Add the eggs, 1 at a time at 1-minute intervals. Add in vanilla and blend well. At this point the batter may appear curdled. Not to worry as the addition of the dry ingredients will remedy this.
5. On low speed add in 1/3 of the flour mixture followed by 1/2 the maple syrup. Then again another 1/3 of the flour and the remaining maple syrup, ending with the last of the flour. Mix only until incorporated after each addition. Scrap the sides of bowl to make sure all ingredients have been included.
6. Gently fold in chopped pecans until blended.
7. Pour batter into prepared pan, smoothing the top with the back of a spoon. Bake in middle of the oven centered on the rack for 60-70 minutes. If cake appears to be getting dark too fast cover lightly with tin foil. Cake will be done with toothpick inserted into middle comes out clean.
8. Cool cake in pan for 10-15 minutes before inverting onto a platter to serve. Enjoy!!