In the same baking spree as the apple pie I also made a pound cake. The name “pound cake” comes from the amounts of an old recipe for this type of cake: 1 pound of flour, 1 pound of butter, 1 pound of sugar and 1 pound of eggs. For the same reason, this cake is called “quatre quarts” (four quarters) in French. If you use the traditional recipe the cake will be a bit dry and a bit bland. To make it more interesting, I’ve added a pinch of salt and the grated zest of a lemon and used vanilla-scented sugar. To make it more moist, I’ve replaced half the eggs with egg yolks and used a slightly lower oven temperature.
For a pan of 30 x 10 cm (12″ x 4″):
300 grams (2/3 pound) flour
300 grams vanilla-scented sugar (created by putting vanilla beans in the sugar jar)
300 grams butter (at room temperature)
6 eggs (300 grams) or 3 eggs (150 grams) plus 9 egg yolks (150 grams)
grated zest of 1 lemon
pinch of salt
15 grams baking powder
Preheat the oven to 150C/300F. Do not use forced air but simple heat from above and below.
Using an electric mixer, first mix the sugar and butter until you obtain a creamy mixture. Then add the eggs one by one.
Put the sugar-butter-egg mixture in a bowl. Add the baking powder, sieved flour, pinch of salt and grated lemon zest.
Mix with a wooden spoon until there are no more lumps.
Grease the cake pan with butter. Add a bit (about 1 tbsp) of flour.
Move the flour around until the pan is completely coated. Discard the remaining flour.
Pour the cake batter into the pan and flatten with a spatula.
Bake for about 1 hour at 150C/300F until a toothpick comes out clean.
Turn over on a rack to cool with the pan on top for the first half hour to keep the cake moist.
Serve when the cake is completely cool. To store it, cover with plastic wrap and return into the pan.