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Source: America's Favorite Food Associations

Pound Cake
Pound cake is absolutely delicious, and so easy to "dress up" with other ingredients. We offer four variations to the plain cake. All are terrific!
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Serves: 8 to 12
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 60-70 minutes
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1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon, optional
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract




Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9-x-5-x-3-inch loaf pan.

Sift together the flour, salt, and cinnamon, if using.

In the bowl of an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. This could take 4 or 5 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, making sure one is thoroughly incorporated before adding the next. Add the vanilla and beat just to mix.

With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the flour to the batter, about 1/2 cup at a time. Beat just until blended. Scrape the batter into the pan, smoothing the surface.

Bake on the center rack of the oven for 60 to 70 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean, the cake is golden brown, and cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan. Set the pan on a wire rack and let cool for about 10 minutes.

Using a narrow spatula or knife, loosen the cake from the sides of the pan. Invert onto the wire rack. Turn the cake right side up and let cool completely.

Variations:
Blueberry Pound Cake: Fold 1 cup of fresh blueberries mixed with 1/4 cup of chopped almonds into the batter after the flour is incorporated. Scrape into the prepared pan and bake as instructed in the recipe.

Butter-Pecan Pound Cake: Substitute 1 cup of firmly packed light or dark brown sugar for the cup of granulated sugar. Fold 1/3 cup of chopped pecans into the batter after the flour is incorporated. Scrape into the prepared pan and bake as instructed in the recipe.

Cherry-Pecan Pound Cake: Add 1/2 teaspoon of almond extract when you add the vanilla extract. Drain and chop a 16-ounce jar of maraschino cherries. Mix the chopped cherries with 1/4 cup of chopped pecans and fold the mixture into the batter after the flour is incorporated. Scrape into the prepared pan and bake as instructed in the recipe.

Lemon Pound Cake: Replace the vanilla extract with 1 teaspoon of lemon extract. Prepare and bake as instructed in the recipe.





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