I talk about mama a lot. I miss her. Not because it’s the holidays, but just because I do everyday.
That aside, the woman could cook! And bake. And yes, Virginia, there is a difference. Nothing reminds me of her more than a pound cake. Specifically, a chocolate pound cake, but that story is for another day. Today is the story of the Brown Sugar and Rum Pound Cake.
When I started baking, I used to think I had hit the pinnacle of baking success with a good, solid, crack-free cheesecake. Yeah, um… no. The truth is, cheesecakes are easy. Even in a spring form. They are pretty forgiving. If you get a crack, embrace it or frost it, eat it, end of story.
A pound cake, not so forgiving. I remember once up on a time, before I knew better, I actually dared to breathe in the same kitchen while a pound cake was baking. It fell. True story. Well, maybe I exaggerated a little, but I SWEAR not by much. My mama wouldn’t let me in the kitchen unless I was sitting on top of the refrigerator. Now THAT is NOT exaggerating! It was a funny sight, but I was out of her way and I could watch. I remember those days and smile because WHO tells a kid to sit on the top of the fridge so they could watch their mama bake a cake? I love that woman!
You also have to remember that if you leave a pound cake in the oven a millisecond too long, it will be dry. Yes. One. Millisecond. And there is NO serving a dry pound cake in pound cake form. (Although there is a fix for this that I will share with you later this week and it involves lots and lots of Amaretto!) I have been fortunate to only have one, yes only one, dry pound cake. It was my fault. I didn’t use mama’s recipe. I KNOW. Flogged 50 times with a wet noodle! The worse part is I know she was shaking her head and laughing at me. As usual. And probably from on top of the fridge.
Brown Sugar and Rum Pound Cake
- 1 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 2 cups light brown sugar
- 1 cup sugar
- 6 eggs
- 3 cups flour
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 cup milk
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 1 tsp. rum extract
Preheat oven to 325. Cut a ring of parchment paper to fit in the bottom of a 10″ tube pan. This will help the cake release. Grease and flour the pan with parchment ring in the bottom. Do not skip the flouring part. Greasing alone can still cause the cake to stick and chaos to remove from the pan. Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time. Combine dry ingredients and add alternately with milk. Begin and end with flour mixture. Add vanilla and rum extract. Fill prepared pan. Pick filled pan up about an inch from a hard surface and drop the pan. Do this two or three times to remove any air bubbles from your cake. This is a pound cake, and you want it to be dense, not light and fluffy. Bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes or when toothpick comes out clean. Cool cake completely on a wire rack, then remove from pan. If you are using a convection oven, baking time will need to be adjusted accordingly.
PS: The BEST part of a pound cake is the cracked ring on top. You WANT this and it will happen when you have a good pound cake. We always serve the ring on top as it really is the best part. However, if you want a more “perfect” appearance, serve it upside down. Really. You’ll have a perfectly flat surface. You can also serve or top this with your favorite sauce or glaze.
I like pound cake. I love my mama. Bon appetit y’all!