One of the first few things I learnt to bake is the classic butter pound cake. Since I started out baking roughly near end of 2011, this is something I’m still trying to make better, like almost all the other stuff I have made so far.
I have been on a mission to get the highly aclaimed butter, hopefully better butter = awesome cake. Well, of course I have to improve on my technique as well and better control my oven. So many, many considersations on the road to baking enlightenment, but I diverge…
Back to the topic of butter, according to Dorie Greenspan in her book Baking: From My Home to Yours, which I own, amazing book I must say, the butter she recommended was Echire and Vermont. Ha, the staff at the gorment store must thought I’m a crazy lady. I was staring really intensely at the butter for a good minute, shocked to find the Echire within my reach.
And yes, I made a pound cake with Echire, but not before I bake a trial cake using the lesser, un-named, common variety butter. Have to be careful not to ruin my precious.
Like any serious blogger who plan and construct their posts properly, they probably would have shot a decent picture of the butter since it’s the main topic. Yours truly did this shot as an afterthought, just in case there are any sceptics “did she really use that butter?” out there. Ok, I really DID use the butter.
Onto the baking process now that we get the doubts out of the way. First up, during the beating of butter and sugar phase, Echire is a lot more stable and I say, whippable, than the common butter, even though it has indeed been softened at room-temperate. It can hold much more air, and the mixture seemed to be fluffier when beating completed. Followed by the usual addition of eggs and more beating. Usual, yeah… My heart almost seized when I saw some curdling happening in the bowl. The eggs must be too big! Or could it be overbeating of eggs that cause the separation? Someone enlighten me, please!? Anyhow, I stopped immediately, and started to fold the flour in manually. It looked a lot better and smoothed out with the flour mixed in. Nonetheless, my heart was still pounding wildly, and I started feeling increasingly depressed. Anyhow, time to get the cake baked.
Tastewise, the cake is marvelous! It is wonderfully light and has an almost delicate crumb (I use top flour). The frangance… woh… the buttery fragance is intoxicating. It is so different from all the greasy butter cakes I had before. Oh, I used a glass dish-pan thing to bake the cake. Look at how beautiful the colour is, and the sides of the cakes are not dry and hard at all. I love it!