Friday, November 06, 2009

Fig Pound Cake

I really learned well about baking from Shirley O. Corriher's book - Bakewise. This pound cake was baked with all her tips in mind - like replacing some of the flour with potato starch which will add moisture as the large granules present in potato starch produce excellent texture - still tight like a pound cake but not super tight.
Egg yolks are emulsifiers, so by adding two will increased moisture and an excellent texture to the pound cake..
Another great secret to cake moisture is to substitute oil for part of the butter. Oil greases flour proteins better than either butter or shortening to prevent gluten from forming and tying up water.
A startling new ingredient - whipped cream. By adding whipped cream, more air will be introduced for a slightly lighter cake and the texture will be velvety, soft and wonderfully tasty.
There will be holes in the cake if the leavening is not evenly distributed, so it is so important to beat the flour, leavening, and other dry ingredients together will with a fork or hand beater.
As i was preparing the ingredients for the cake, Belinda came by with some beautifully riped figs so i just sliced them and arranged them on top of the cake batter which brought this cake to another level.

6 tbsp/3 ozs/85 g unsalted butter- dice into tiny cubes
1/4 cup/48 g shortening
40 ml oil
1 cup/198 g fine granulated sugar
3 large eggs
2 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups/188 g bleached all-purpose flour
1/8 cup/23 g potato starch
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp buttermilk
1/4 cup/60 ml heavy cream
4 figs - cut into slices
Arrange a shelf in the lower third of the oven, place a baking stone on it, and preheat the oven to 350f/177 c.
Spray or grease a bundt pan generously and dust with flour.
Beat butter and shortening on medium speed until the mixture is light and pale in color. Add sugar and continue to cream until verylight, scraping down the sides and across the bottom of the bowl at least once. While creaming, feel the bowl, if it does not feel cool, plce in the freezer for 5 minutes and then continue creaming.
Add in vanilla extract and then the oil, a little at a time until incorporated.
Turn to the lowest speed and add in the egg yolks, then the whole eggs, one at a time.
Beat together the flour, potato starch, baking powder and salt with a fork or hand beater for 30 seconds until well blended.
On the lowest speed, blend 1/3 of the flour miture into the butter mixture. Alternate adding buttermilk, then the flour mixture, until all of both ar incorporated, scraping down the sides across the bottom at least once.
Place a bowl, beaters, and the heavy cream in the freezer to chill for 5 minutes. Whip the cream until soft peaks form when the beater is lifted. Whiped just a little beyond the soft peak stage. Stir about 1/4 of the whipped cream into the batter to lighten. Then gently fold the rest of the whipped cream into the batter.
Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan. From a height of about 4 inches , drop the pan onto the counter to knock out bubbles. Smooth the batter and arrange the sliced figs on top.
Place the cake in the oven on the baking stone and bake until the cake springs back when rouched or a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean but moist about 1 hour.(Cake should not pull away from the sides until it has just come ou of the oven)
Place the cake in the bundt pan on a rack to cool for 10 minutes before removing cake from pan.



Christine Toh said...

Hi Lily,

Thanks for the tips, this is really helpful. I intend to bake pound cake this weekend. Will use the recipes you posted, will use apricot instead of fig.

tinyskillet said...

Yum, it looks so good I want to eat a piece right now.

Ube said...

Thanks for sharing your tested recipe to us. I have Bakewise book too and found most of her recipes stayed away from the traditional ones. Like the pound cake, I read a lot of articles about pound cake and all of them say the name was derived from the ingredients used like a pound of butter, a pound of flour, etc. Shirley's Bakewise proved them otherwise!

Anonymous said...

Looks beautiful and healthy. Thanks for sharing.

Talita said...

What a soft dough! Looks yummylicious!

Mary Bergfeld said...

What a lovely cake. Thanks for the recipe, Lily.

Unknown said...

wow!this fig pund cake looks yummy.Love fig!!great recipe :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for sharing your valuable tips so generously. I modified my pound cake recipe by incorporating your tips and the outcome is fantastic! Previously I found my pound cake too heavy and coarse in texture. All I need to do now is to try out the recipe again by varying the amount of the various ingredients to get the taste I want! You are simply wonderful, Lily!

linli said...

Great tips Lily!
I'm going to try this soon, been wondering about how to get the moisture/texture right..

Whisk N Bake said...

Hi Lily! I don't have potato starch. Is there a substitute I can use? Corn flour, maybe? Michelle

Unknown said...


yes, cornstarch can sub for potato starch.

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