Pound cakes are easy to overlook when placed beside scrumptious cakes like red velvet cake, angel food cake, upside-down cake, and the likes because of their simple and modest appearance. But Pound Cake can stand on its own without the help of frosting or candied drizzle. It is so moist, rich, and tender that it is considered decadent on its own.
Origin of Pound Cake
Pound cakes are said to have originated in Europe and can be dated back to the early 1700s. They were traditionally made with a pound of each of the 4 main ingredients which are butter, eggs, flour, and sugar baked in a Bundt mold or loaf pan.
Over time, the main ingredients for making pound cakes have not changed, although certain additions or revisions have been made to make a richer, more delicate moist cake. Some recipes even make use of fruits for a more appealing presentation.
How to make a Mandarin Orange-Barley Pound Cake
Prep Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 3 hrs 50 mins
Yield: one 9-inch loaf
- 1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup barley flour, such as Arrowhead Mills
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
- 1 Hale Groves Holiday Gold
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1 teaspoon orange liqueur
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees with rack in lower third. Butter a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan. In a bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder, and salt. With a vegetable peeler, peel zest from half of orange into about 5 strips; squeeze and reserve 2 teaspoons juice. Pulse zest strips with granulated sugar in a food processor until finely ground.
- In another bowl, beat butter and cream cheese on medium until smooth. Add orange-sugar mixture and beat on high until pale and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Beat in vanilla and eggs one at a time on medium. Add flour mixture and beat on low until just incorporated. Pour batter into pan and smooth top with a spatula.
- Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until cake is golden brown and a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour, 15 minutes. (If browning too quickly, tent with foil.) Let cool 30 minutes in pan on a wire rack. Remove from pan. Let cool completely on rack, about 2 hours.
In a bowl, whisk together confectioners’ sugar, reserved orange juice, and liqueur until smooth. Spread glaze over cake and then sprinkle finely grated zest from remaining orange half over top.