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Friday, March 5, 2010

Honey-Lemon Pound Cake

Lately there has been a slight change in the air.  I'm no longer worried about another snow storm.  It's sunny when I drive to work.  As the appearance of spring inches closer, my wintry desire to cozy up into something warm, rich, and heavy is beginning to melt away along with the snow I'm afraid will still be around in July. 

Last night I wanted something sweet, but not something overly rich or creamy and I didn't have a lot of energy to begin a baking project at 9 p.m.  I decided to make a pound cake flavored with vanilla, honey and lemon.  Pound cakes are simple to make, the ingredients are found in most kitchens, and the basic batter can support many variations. 

A little over an hour later I was well rewarded for my selection.  The cake was moist and delicious.  The flavors of the honey and lemon don't announce themselves loudly, but lend a hint of their flavor.  If you want to dial up the lemon flavor a lemon glaze would be perfect.  This would also be excellent topped with a little fresh whipped cream and some berries once they come into season.  In any event, this is a wonderful little pound cake to serve this upcoming spring (or now if you can't wait).

You'll Need:

1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 1/4 cup sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 Tb honey
2 Tb lemon juice
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt

Getting Started:

Remove butter and eggs from the refrigerator and let sit until they reach room temperature. 

Sift flour into a medium bowl and mix in the salt and the baking powder.

Butter a standard loaf pan.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Now You're Cookin':

In a large bowl use a mixer to cream together the sugar and butter.  Beat until fluffy.

Add eggs one at a time, combining thoroughly before each addition.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition.

Add vanilla, honey and lemon juice.  Mix until evenly incorporated.

Add flour mixture in three additions and mix until just fully incorporated.

Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the batter with a rubber spatula.

Bake cake for 50-60 minutes until the top is golden and the center has set.

Cool cake in the pan for 10 minutes and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Dress up with a glaze or some fruit or simply slice and serve.

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