Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Ina Garten's Honey Vanilla Pound Cake. Some help from bakers?

One of the gifts I received for Christmas was Ina Garten's latest cookbook (thanks sis!)

I made the Honey Vanilla Pound Cake. This is the first time I have baked something from scratch here and I have some questions.

I couldn't find cake flour. I read online that you subtract a tablespoon from each cup of all-purpose flour and add some cornstarch but I couldn't find any cornstarch. While the cake was good, it was a little too dense. Maybe Castroni's sells cake flour?

Also in converting the temperature (350) to Celsius (180) I wonder if the oven was too hot. My cake browned quickly on top and was not baked all the way through. I had to leave it in longer.

Last but not least, the recipe called for 4 extra-large eggs but I could only find large. In the future should I used 5 large eggs?

Thanks.

10 comments:

Sara, Ms Adventures in Italy said...

I won't be any help...I actually gave away cookbooks that specified cake flour because it was too much trouble to deal with in Italy! It's a lower-gluten flour than regular flour. Try this : www.joyofbaking.com/flour.html

Simone said...

I use standard flours (US Gold Metal) to bake cakes without issue- sift once alone and sift a 2nd time with salt, baking powder or soda (whatever recipe calls for) and other powdered ingredients

Preheat oven to 350F (180c) and place cakes in center rack towards front of oven. I check half way through, turn pan 180 degrees so front goes to back and check with toothpick 5 minutes before they say to pull cake out.

Only add the white of the 5th egg if you can't find 4 extra large eggs.

Also, remember don't beat batter too long as it gets "tough"

Happy Baking!

Grooommama said...

"Honey Vanilla Pound Cake...?" Love this...Well, you will have to use 5 eggs instead --if you're only working with small ones...I will try this receipe out..love you...thanks.enjoy baking.

Kataroma said...

cornstarch=maizena. Available in most supermarkets.

No idea about the cake flour though.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

Sara - thanks. I don't want to give away my cookbooks! :)

simone - grazie for the tips. I didn't know I should only add the egg white.

groommamma - happy baking. the cake is very good.

kataroma - grazie...I need cornstarch for other recipes. I had no idea what it was called.

KC said...

Another term for cornstarch is amido di mais.

I've read that EU and US egg sizes are not the same- that the US sizes are smaller so that an extra-large egg would be equal to a large one here. But I don't know if its really true or even if makes much difference. I've made US recipes following that rule and ignoring it and I've never noticed had problems either way. I guess what I want to say is that most of the time a minuscule difference like that isn't going to ruin a recipe.

Also, I always covert 350 to 175. (I think it's actually 176.5 or something like that. I guess I prefer to err on the side of less heat.) Does your oven heat on the bottom and the top? With some cakes, I have it heat only from the bottom.

Can I just say that honey vanilla pound cake sounds amazing? I'm sure yours was delish even if a little browned.

glamah16 said...

I have used that substition before for cake flour before and it worked. I say nothing wrong with all purpose.
Simone gives excellent advice.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

KC - thank you. I never heard that about the eggs. Next time I make the cake I will bake it at a lower temperature. Yes the cake was yummy.

glamah16 - grazie.

TheCluelessCrafter said...

I made this pound cake two weekends ago, also a gift but from my mother-in-law.

It was thoroughly delicious tasting, yet not all that gorgeous looking. I too did not have the extra large eggs (did not add another) and used left over cake flour with regular flour.

I suppose I asked for it - a lesson that following the directions is the way to go.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

TCC - I agree when baking, it's better to follow the recipe as it's more of a science. I don't worry about it so much when I'm cooking (that could also be because I cook a lot more than I bake)