Baked Sunday Mornings: Buttery Pound Cake with Salty Caramel Glaze

When I received my copy of Baked Occasions and saw the recipe for "Buttery Pound Cake with Salty Caramel Glaze," I got a little upset. Our Baked Sunday Mornings group helped test the recipes in this cookbook, and I was bummed that I had not been given the opportunity to test this recipe before publication. The Baked boys are geniuses when it comes to salted caramel anything, and this pound cake sounded irresistible -- all the more so because the recipe calls for high-fat European-style butter.

To make the cake batter, you cream room temperature butter (I used Plugrá) and sugar until light and fluffy, add vanilla; incorporate eggs and egg yolks one at a time; and alternately add the sifted dry ingredients (all-purpose flour, cake flour, baking powder, and salt) and heavy cream.

My batter was very light and fluffy, like cake frosting. But I think I might have beat it more than I was supposed to. I was making a double batch of batter, which requires four whole eggs and four egg yolks. I added the eggs and yolks one a time, beating for a minute after each addition -- so that was eight minutes of mixing, just while adding the eggs. It dawned on me afterwards that I probably should have added the eggs and egg yolks two at a time so that the total mixing time would have been only four minutes, as it would be if I was making a just single batch of batter.
I used two parchment-lined 10-inch by 5-inch pans to bake the pound cakes, and I think that it would have been too much batter for 8.5-inch by 4.5-inch pans. I would have expected that this cake would be glazed while still warm (as warm cakes tend to absorb glazes better), but the recipe says that you should wait 12 to 24 hours before eating it and that you should glaze it the same day you plan on serving it. So I waited until the cake was completely cool to add the glaze.

To make the salty caramel glaze, you boil a mixture of dark brown sugar, heavy cream, and high-fat butter for 90 seconds; add fleur de sel; let the glaze cool slightly; and then whisk in powdered sugar. I ended up with all sorts of lumps after I added the sugar and I had to put the glaze through a sieve. It was also quite thin while it was still warm, so after I poked holes in the tops of the cakes with a skewer and poured on the glaze, a lot of it just rolled off of the top. But since I had put the cakes on a cooling rack over a baking sheet lined with wax paper, I was able to scoop up the runoff and spoon it over the cake again. It looked like a massive amount of glaze, but in the end I was able to get most of it onto the cake. I finished off the cakes with a generous sprinkle of fleur de sel on top.

I let the glazed cakes sit out at room temperature overnight. The next morning when I sliced them, I was surprised and delighted to see that substantial amounts of the caramel glaze had soaked into the cakes. It looked a little odd, but added a big boost of flavor. This cake exceeded my high expectations and was absolutely freakin' delicious. The vanilla cake was dense but not heavy, with a tender crumb, and the salty caramel glaze was insanely good. Tom and I enjoyed the cake cold, as was suggested in the recipe. I also really liked the toasted flavor of the crust and the ends of the cake.

This is probably my favorite pound cake of all time. Buttery, sweet, salty, rich -- it gives you everything you could want in one decadent bite.

Recipe: "Buttery Pound Cake with Salty Caramel Glaze" from Baked Occasions by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito, recipe available here at Baked Sunday Mornings.


Chelly said…
Atleast you got to be a tester....that would have been so much fun! The cake looks out of this world good!
Yum. Love the look of the caramel down in the cake. Will have to make this one day.
Anonymous said…
I agree-one of the best pound cakes around. Love your plate.
The disco rainbow plate makes it look even MORE yummy!
Anonymous said…
Gorgeous slices-- I love all that caramel inside! I had the same issue with the sugar clumping up, so I put the pot back on the heat for a few minutes and the white bits melted right away. And yes, it looked like so much glaze, but most of it made it onto the cake after several layers. Sooooo delicious.... :-D