I have always been partial to desserts that are not overly sweet. I suppose that is why I cannot resist the allure of a beautiful pound cake. It is like the Mother of all desserts, being nostalgic and modern at the very same time. I love the simplicity of it and how it can be just as delicious at the end of the meal as it can at the beginning of the day, toasted with a smear of butter. As the holidays inch closer, it’s the perfect item to have on hand for guests or for an afternoon pick-up when the chores of the day have left you depleted. The recipe below is one that I have been using for decades and it’s from my first cookbook, The Complete Southern Cookbook. Buttermilk gives it just a hint of spunk and keeps it wonderfully moist. Cheers to the season!
Plantation Buttermilk Pound Cake
Yield: 12 servings
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon pure lemon extract
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Lightly grease and flour a 12-cup Bundt pan and set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter at medium speed until creamy, around 2 minutes. Gradually add the sugar, beating 5 minutes.
Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until the yellow disappears, Stir in the lemon extract and vanilla extract.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to the butter mixture alternately with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Beat on low speed just until blended. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan.
Bake 1 hour and 5 minutes or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan 10 minutes on a wire rack. Remove and cool completely on a wire rack before slicing and serving.