Thursday, January 19, 2012

quarter-quarts - French Fridays w/ Dorie

This recipe is a basic pound cake, but lighted up by whipping the whites and folding them in at the end. It's a small recipe, so you can make it for a family dessert and not have to wait for a crowd. There is a good sweetness to it, but not overwhelmingly so. I made this last Monday on our day off for Martin Luther King Jr. day and we're still enjoying it. Actually the last piece is slated for me tonight (shh).

I thought a pound cake sounded good, but wanted to jazz it up. I thinly sliced a few apples and sprinkled the with lemon juice. I then made a little bit of caramel - just sugar and more lemon juice. I heated it until it colored and poured it in 1/2 of the bottom of a springform bundt pan.
Caramel in the pan

Topped the caramel with the apples and then tried to gently top the apples with the batter. I only had enough caramel to do the one half of the pan, but it didn't change my baking time. I baked at 350 for 28 minutes.

I read in one of my classic, go-to cookbooks how to make pineapple upside down cake, thinking the concept was similar. It sounded pretty close, so I followed the instructions on how to unmold.

I think the caramel solidified too much and stuck to the bottom along with some of the cake, of course, but I was able to piece it together. The taste was great even if it wasn't as picturesque as I'd have liked. I liked the apple side best, but the plain side had a very lovely and rich taste as well. It may have been because of the vanilla I used. My father sent me a Mexican vanilla which is amazing. It has a sweet and almost coconutty flavor. Not much like vanilla and really stands out almost every time I use it. The other flavor that added to this was the lemon juice. I think it cut down on what may have turned out to be too sweet.

I'd love to serve this cake with berries and whipped cream. It will make a lovely spring dessert. But this time it made an unintended birthday cake for Dr. King. Yes, we did sing.
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