The adventures of an American lover of all things French...
Wednesday, July 6, 2016
I think that I have coined a new phrase. Oui, moi. Just a few minutes ago. Baker’s Reward. Definition: What the baker deserves after measuring, mixing, putting something delicious in the oven, and cleaning up. And as I sit and type and wonderful smells start coming out of my oven, I am sipping my reward.
I started my day very early by taking photos of the full moon. I went out hunting for it last night but couldn’t find it and gave up. Too many trees in this part of the city. I must have snapped 50 of them, using an iPad, an iPhone, a Canon Rebel T5 and a Canon PowerShot SX700. The PowerShot took the best ones. It has a great zoom- 30x. There is just something about the full moon. The last time a full moon met the Summer Solstice was in 1948, before my time, and the next one will be June 21, 2062. It’s called a Strawberry Moon, it seems, based on the Algonquin tribe collecting the lovely little red fruit. So, a once in my lifetime occurence. Worth getting up really early to observe, in my humble opinion.
Since I was up, I decided to get out the butter, cream cheese, and eggs in order to revisit Jamie’s Pound Cake. I made a couple of changes. And in a couple of hours we will see how it turns out. I can tell you right now that my glass is almost empty and my kitchen smells heavenly.
Here is where I first blogged about Jamie’s cake. (Still The Sabbatical Chef- I am just trying to learn WordPress and its ins and outs with the idea of moving the blog over to this platform.)
And here is the recipe.
Jamie’s Pound Cake makes 2 loaves or one bundt cake, but Jamie recommends the loaves
For the cake:
3 c. sugar (this time, I used 2 cups granulated white sugar and 1 cup Turbinado cane sugar)
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
3 sticks + 2 T. butter, room temperature (2 T. are for buttering the pans)
3 c. all purpose flour
3 large eggs, slightly beaten
1 t. each: vanilla extract (this go around, I used 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 tsp. coconut extract, 3 tsp. Praline Pecan Liqueur -sent to me by Ms. Tammy in Arizona who spoils me)
For the glaze:
1 cup sugar
1/2 T. each: vanilla extract
1 t. each: brandy
Prepare 2 loaf pans by generously coating them with soft butter and then coating them with sugar.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the sugar, butter and cream cheese.
Gradually alternate adding the flour and eggs, stopping to scrap down the bowl as needed. Mix just until blended.
Add the extracts and the wines until blended.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pans.
Place the pans in a cold oven and then set the oven to 300 degrees. (I think my oven is a bit off so I set it to 325˚F for the first 40 minutes and then turned it down to 315˚F)
Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes. (Sometimes mine need a little longer. However, you want this cake super moist–like a butter cake.)
Once you remove the cakes from the oven, let them cool in the pan on a wire rack.
In the meantime, melt one cup of sugar in half a cup of water in a pot on the stove. Once the sugar is melted, remove the pot from the heat and add the extracts and wines.
Spoon the glaze over the top of each cake–do not remove the cakes from their pans. Continue to let the cakes cool and absorb the glaze for a couple of hours before serving. ***This can be made in a bundt pan. However, you will need to invert the cake before adding the glaze. I feel that you do not get as much glaze absorption on a bundt cake as a loaf cake.
Bon appétit and bon baking! And happy rewards to all you bakers out there! Here’s to Strawberry Moons and once in a lifetime happenings. Merci, Jamie et Tammy!