To heck with editing pics in Blogger. It’s a pain. I still haven’t figured out why I can’t move pics around my post by right-clicking and dragging anymore. So I’m giving this Windows Live Writer a go today to see if it’s any easier. I am also trying out Windows Live Photo today for the first to see if it’s easier than Picasa. It seems to have more features and it’s quite easy to use.
The other day, while browsing around for bundt pans at the Cookshop in City Square, I saw these cool Nordicware pans. The one I chose was the 10 cup Chrysanthemum pan.
The “petals” in the pattern create a lot of CRUST, and as you know from my sidebar’s ongoing “Who Love the Crusties” poll, a humongous majority of people are into the crusties and covet the brown bits. So this pan’s for you.
I chose a pound cake recipe from one of 5 new cookbooks I purchased recently. I really ought to take some pics of my bookshelf. It’s bursting with way too many fantastic cookbooks. I found this winner from Bakewise, by Shirley Corriher. The book is hugely thick but I soon found out that most of the pages were filled with “The Math” and explanations of formulas. Much of the explanations are redundant (extracts are repeated throughout the book). I could do with a lot less of the repetition and instead with more stories, recipes and illustrations. Despite the redundancies, so far I’m on board with Corriher’s excellent and in-depth knowledge. What’s important to me is whether the recipe works…and can be duplicated by the home baker.
I can honestly say that this is the best pound cake recipe I’ve ever baked. The staff at work concur when I brought them some leftovers and I received rave reviews. The crust was amazing. The interior crumb was moist. It was everything a pound cake should be. And more!
On the first day, fresh from the oven, the pound cake had a nutty aroma and flavour profile. I practically inhaled a quarter of the cake on my own and had to go on the treadmill and run for 90 minutes to alleviate my guilt. On the following day, the pound cake was just as moist and the crust was still crispy and delectably crunchy and crumbly. It was fabulous.
The only problem I encountered with the recipe was that it called for a 12 cup bundt pan. None are to be found nowadays in cookware stores in Canada. The staff at the Cookshop said they stopped making those a while ago. People use 10-cup bundt pans according to them. The store only carried 10-cup bundt pans but I know I could have used my angel food cake pan. That would have been boring though. So I bought the cute chrysanthemum pan.
btw, posting through Windows Live Writer--so far-- is easier than blogger. I like it. I’m going to keep using it until I find something better. This is so user-friendly I don’t know why I didn’t do this sooner! I guess I didn’t have problems before and I tend not to fix things unless they’re broke!
The most intriguing element to Corriher’s pound cake recipe was the addition of whipping cream beaten to the soft peak stage. What it adds to the cake is moistness and a dimension of nutty butteriness. She adds this whipping cream element to some of her other cakes too and I have a feeling those recipes will be winners as well. I’m going to try one of her other recipes for Bebe’s 6th birthday cake. No, I’m not going to outdo myself like I did last year with the Ariel Castle Cake. I don’t think I can top that. I’m just going to go girlie-girl and do a simple cake with flowers. She wants chocolate of course. I’m thinking white frosting. Maybe a really tall cake…taller than it is wide!
CHEF HEATHER HURLBERT’S MAGNIFICENT MOIST WHIPPED CREAM POUND CAKE
from BakeWise: The Hows and Whys of Successful Baking, by Shirley O. Corriher
Makes one large 12-cup (2.8 L) Bundt cake, of 24 small fluted cakes
- 2 T each butter and flour to prepare the pan or pans
- 2 cups (16 oz/454 g) unsalted butter, cut in 2 T (1 oz/28g) pieces
- 2 3/4 cups (19.3oz/546g) sugar
- 1 T (15 ml) pure vanilla extract
- 6 large eggs (10.5 oz/298 g) room temperature
- 2 3/4 cups (12.1 oz/343 g) spooned and levelled bleached all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (118 ml) heavy cream
- 2 cups (8 oz/227 g) fresh or frozen and thawed blueberries, optional
- Generously butter a 12-cup (2.8L) Bundt pan or 24 fluted brioche tins. Add 2 tablespoons (0.5 oz/14 g) flour and rotate the pan to coat. Dump out any excess.
- Arrange a shelf in the lower third of the oven, place a baking stone on it, and preheat the oven to 350degreesF/177degreesC.
- With a mixer on medium speed, beat the butter to soften. Add the sugar and continue to beat (cream) until very light and fluffy, scraping down the sides and the bottom of the bowl at least once. While creaming, feel the bowl; if it does not feel cool, place in the freezer for 5 minutes and then continue creaming.
- Beat in the vanilla. On the lowest speed, beat in the eggs one at a time.
- Add the flour in several batches, and mix just until blended well.
- Place a medium bowl with the beaters and the heavy cream in the freezer to chill for 5 minutes. Then with the cold bowl and cold beaters, whip the cream until soft peaks form when the beater is lifted. Whip just a little beyond the soft peak stage.
- Stir about one-quarter of the whipped cream into the batter. Then gently fold the rest of the whipped cream into the batter. If using, fold in the blueberries. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
- Place the cake in the oven on the stone and bake until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out moist but without crumbs, 50-60 minutes for the Bundt pan, about 20 minutes for small tins. Place the cake in the pan on a rack to cool for 10 minutes. Loosen the cake from the pan by jarring it against the counter. Invert the cake onto the serving platter to finish cooling.
*NB: Cakebrain’s Chrysanthemum Bundt Pound Cake was made with a 10-cup Nordicware bundt pan sprayed with Pam. I poured in enough batter to reach about 1 1/2 inches from the rim and poured the remaining batter in a small 2-cup loaf pan. I adjusted baking time for the loaf pan to 50 minutes and the bundt for 65 minutes. I didn’t use a stone in my oven. My baking times were slightly longer than called for in the recipe as the tops still jiggled slightly.