Monday, February 13, 2017

A Little Sweetness

Another Valentine's Day has arrived with all its heralds of the holiday...chocolates, roses, hearts, red and pink for miles.  I'm bringing you something sweet with jammy and buttery goodness.  Keep this in mind for a birthday, a dinner party, weekend brunch, or yes, even Valentine's day.

The lastest issue of the King Arthur Flour catalog was in my mailbox a few weeks ago and in it was their recipe for pound cake.  When was the last time you had pound cake?  I remember an Entenmann's pound cake was frequently in the house when I was growing up.  Rich with butter, it was perfect either topped with strawberries and whipped cream or just on its own, where you could savor the simplicity of it.

I kept thinking about that recipe and after I found a set of little heart cake pans while out shopping one day, I knew that was the impetus needed to finally bake that cake.  Of course, I had to add a little of me to the cake and decided that making a filled cake would be the way to go.  The great thing is that you can easily use a store bought jam, or take the extra few minutes and make your own.

King Arthur Flour Original Pound Cake Recipe

Quick Strawberry Preserves
Makes about a cup

1-2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
1 cup sugar
Juice of a quarter lemon
1/4 cup water

Put all ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a low boil.  Once the mixture boils, lower the heat and allow to simmer until the fruit begins to break down.  Feel free to help the process by crushing the fruit with a wooden spoon.  When the mixtures has reduced by half, turn off the heat and allow to cool.  It will thicken slightly as it cools.  

For the cake:

You can make a classic loaf cake or a single 9-inch layer (maybe even a heart shaped layer).  Slice the cake in half and spread a fairly thick layer of jam/preserves on the bottom half, gently replacing the top.  Dust with confectioners' sugar or even a layer of whipped cream.  This cake also gets better if you let the preserves seep into the cake, kind of like a jelly donut.