Pound Cake at Midnight

Emma here. My poor mother was stuck at Disneyland from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday for my sister’s choir performance. They got second place! (Out of two teams, but that is unnecessary information). After the choir sang, it was 70 minute wait lines and greasy turkey legs to look forward to until the awards banquet in the evening. Needless to say, when mom called me on the road home, she sounded exhausted.

I decided to whip up a treat to welcome her back to our humble abode after a long day. I sat at the kitchen table considering my fallback, chocolate chip cookies, and a mighty good fallback indeed. But then I thought that something breakfast-y might be nice (not that chocolate chip cookies can’t, and won’t, be eaten for breakfast in our household). After all, their estimated time of arrival was halfway to breakfast anyways. Also, everyone would have something to munch on in the morning.

I dragged out Mollie Katzen‘s Moosewood Cookbook, a favorite in our house, and flipped open the pages to her pound cake recipe. My jaw dropped at the amount of butter, eggs, and sugar; but I knew immediately that this was the perfect morsel with which to comfort her and Olivia before they collapsed in bed.

I dragged out my physics notebook to review some formulas while baking, multitasking for the win. The cake took about 20 minutes to prepare, much quicker than the clean-up afterward.

I left the still warm cake on the counter with a note, some money to cover the half a dozen eggs I used, and a thermos of hot tea with honey. Oh, and a few leftover pieces of garlic cheese bread from Pascucci, especially for Olivia. They loved it.

The morning brought more slices of pound cake with strawberries on top and a cup coffee on the side. The perfect pre-surf snack; it tied me over just perfectly for 45 minutes of paddling and very little wave action.

Pound Cake

From Mollie Katzen’s Moosewood Cookbook

  • Butter and flour for the pans
  • 1 lb. (4 sticks) butter, softened
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 6 eggs (yikes!)
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 Tbsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour the bottom and sides of bundt pan.

2. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar with an electric mixer at high speed until light and fluffy.

3. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Set aside

4. Sift together dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Mix together the milk and vanilla. Add dry and wet alternatively to butter mixture, beginning and ending with dry. Be careful to not spill over the edge, because by this time your bowl will most likely be very full! Mix by hand, just enough to blend thoroughly without excess beating.

A cup of tea is essential while undergoing any baking endeavour.

5. Spread the batter into the prepared pan.

6. Bake 50 to 60 minutes, or until a sharp knife inserted all the way down comes out clean.

*Note: I think I over-baked my cake a bit; it was slightly dry and could have been more moist. I baked it for about five minutes past the 60 minute mark, until a knife came out clean. I advise taking it out at 60 minutes, even if the inserted knife comes out with some sticky dough on it.

7. Allow to cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a plate. Cool completely before slicing.

A delightful breakfast, snack, accompaniment to afternoon tea, or (of course) midnight treat.



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