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Sunday, January 19, 2014

Old fashioned Pound Cake with Chocolate Chips

Finally, it's the beginning of a new year with The Cake Slice Bakers. I had missed several bakes with them for various reasons and I missed baking with these lovely ladies.

Yes!! I made it on time this month :) It is a good start for getting things in order isn't it?

Anyhow, it is my first bake with Carole Walter, the author of the book we are baking from this year, "Great Cakes". From my first glimpse of this book, I almost rolled my eyes with boredom as there is a serious lack of pictures which is usually one of the first few things that catch my eyes whenever I read or buy a new cookbook or bakebook. I'm sure many of my CSBers would definitely agree. However, we have agreed positively that we would add to this cookbook many of our own creations with her recipes. 

The recipe for this month is "Old fashioned Pound Cake with Chocolate Chips". I thought it was just perfect to celebrate for Chinese New Year as well. Yeah, celebrate the new year with an old recipe. What more can be better right?

Have you ever made a pound cake before? I would say that I have made many but this is indeed an extraordinary recipe. You don't believe me too right? I had that doubt when I first read the recipe until I decided to attempt her variation. Believe me, the variation is definitely not just the addition of chocolate chips which was my simple variation to her classic old fashioned pound cake recipe. To know more, read on.

Serves 8-10
Loaf pan (9" x 5" x 2 3/4") which is 8 cup capacity

Ingredients:

225g sifted cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
226g unsalted butter (I used Golden Churn butter)
225g ultrafine 200g caster sugar
4 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
61g milk
155g chocolate chips

Method:
  1. Position rack in the lower half of the oven. Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius and butter a loaf pan and line it with parchment paper. Dust with all-purpose flour and tap it to remove the excess over your kitchen sink.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  3. Cut the butter into 1 inch pieces and place in the large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with beaters. Soften at low speed. Increase the speed to medium-high and cream until smooth and light in colour for about 1.5 to 2 minutes.
  4. Add about 50g sugar, 1 tbsp at a time, taking 6 to 8 minutes to blend well. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally.
  5. Add the eggs egg yolks, 1 at a time at 1 minute intervals. Scrape the sides of the bowl again. Blend in the vanilla extract. The mixture may appear somewhat curdled but will smooth out when the flour is added.
  6. Reduce the mixer speed to low. Add the dry ingredients alternately with the liquid, dividing the liquid into 2 parts, starting and ending with the flour. Mix only until incorporated after each addition. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally.
  7. With a clean bowl, whisk egg whites and add the remaining 150g sugar, 1 tbsp at a time, taking 6 to 8 minutes to blend well. When you get stiff peaks, you can stop.
  8. Fold in a bit of the egg white mixture into the butter mixture. Once it is well-incorporated, you may fold in the rest of the egg white mixture into the butter.
  9. Fold in the chocolate chips into the finished batter.
  10. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan(s) and smooth the surface with the back of a tablespoon or spatula.
  11. Bake in the oven for about 65 to 70 minutes or until the cake is golden brown on top and begin to come away. If it browns too quickly, tent it with foil on top.
  12. Remove the cake from the oven and place it on a rack to cool for 10 to 15 minutes. Invert the cake onto the rack and remove the pan. Turn the cake top side up onto another cake rack to let it cool completely.
Note: 
Wrap well in aluminium foil or plastic wrap. This cake can be stored in room temperature for up to 5 days.

Notes:
  • Pound cake batters curdle after the eggs are added. This will be corrected when flours are added so do not worry about this curdling.
  • Separating the eggs make a lighter pound cake and is optional. Add the egg yolks as you would do with a pound cake recipe that uses whole eggs and then, fold in the beaten egg whites at the end.
  • In pound cake recipes, flour is generally added at a slightly higher mixer speed than you would for regular batters.
  • Beads of moisture that form at the crack on top of a pound cake are common. The moisture forms from the steam that escapes from the split in the cake. Do not wait for the moisture beads to disappear as the cake can overbake and become dry.
Check out my successful chocolate chip pound cake!


I'm not sure if you see it close enough, yes the pound cake has a really tight crumb. When I first cut into the pound cake and sunk my teeth into a slice, I had the initial impression that the pound cake is like that of Sara Lee's. Sara Lee's would definitely be a more dense version. 

I think Carole is so right about getting a much lighter pound cake by separating the eggs. Honestly, this is the first time I separated eggs when making a pound cake. In future, I will definitely separate my eggs with pound cakes. It makes my cake so light that it just resembles the crumbs of a soft butter cake. Mind you, the big bits in the cakes ain't raisins. They are the 'gigantic' chocolate chips that I love to use whenever I bake with chocolate chips. They are somewhat melted and gives a nice chocolatey taste to the pound cake. 

Carole, you are so brilliant!!

I'm submitting this post to The Cake Slice.



I'm also submitting this post to Cook-Your-Books#8 organized by Joyce of kitchenflavours.




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