May 24, 2020

Patriotic Pound Cake

I think it's safe to say this Memorial Day Weekend is unlike any we have ever known due to shelter in place and, of course, the Bay Area weather is forecast to be glorious and sunny.  But hey-ho, no use getting down about it, right?  I'll still enjoy the lovely weather, albeit from a safe social distance!


Memorial Day is the unofficial start of the summer season here in the US and I wanted to make something patriotic to celebrate the holiday.  In the past I've made blueberry pies with a star cutout crust or Ina Garten's festive flag cake.  This year I decided to try my hand at making a Patriotic Pound Cake.  I love a good marble cake with swirls of different colored batter so why not try it in the iconic red, white and blue?

I started with the Martha Stewart Living recipe for three-layer pound cake because it has the most delicious texture and crumb using the reverse creaming method.  I omitted the chocolate ingredients and tinted 1/3 of the vanilla cake with red or blue gel food coloring.   To create the marble effect there are quite a few different techniques, but for this cake I used small ice cream scoops to portion each of the colored batters into the loaf pan.  Use a sharp knife to slice the pound cake and I guarantee you'll be delighted with the patriotic swirls!

Hope everyone has a fun, safe and healthy Memorial Day Weekend! 

Patriotic Pound Cake

Makes one 9" loaf cake
1/3 cup whole milk, room temperature
3 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 sticks + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, cut in to pieces, plus more for the pan
red and blue gel food color
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Butter and flour a 9-by-5 inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, and vanilla. In another bowl, beat together sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt on low speed. Continue beating while adding butter until mixture is crumbly. Add half of milk mixture; beat on medium-high until fluffy, 1 minute. Add remaining milk mixture and beat until incorporated, about 30 seconds.

Divide the batter equally into 3 medium sized bowls.  Add red gel food color to one of the bowls and stir until color is fully blended in the batter.  Add blue gel food color to one of the bowls and stir until color is fully blended in the batter.  Leave the last bowl uncolored.

Drop small amounts of the batter, alternating colors, in the prepared loaf pan until all the batter is used.  Gently tape the bottom of the loaf pan to break up any air bubbles that may have formed and to also smooth out the batter on top.

Bake until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, about 1 hour, 15 minutes (if top is browning too quickly, tent with foil). Let cool in pan 15 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack and let cool completely, about 2 hours.


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