Love and Confections: April 2014

April 24, 2014

Aunt B's Pound Cake

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Do you have one of those recipes that instantly makes you think of someone in particular? This pound cake is that recipe for me. I have loved it since the first time Aunt B made it for me. I always look forward to when she offers to bring dessert, because I hope it is this pound cake.

It is a moist, sweet and dense pound cake - perfect with a scoop of ice cream, fresh berries, or by itself. This is a very large recipe, making three loaves. These cakes freeze well, so just wrap them tightly in plastic wrap, then foil, label and you have an instant dessert right out of the freezer.

Aunt B's Pound Cake
a Love and Confection Family recipe

Pound Cake Ingredients:
 - 2 sticks Unsalted Butter, room temperature
 - 3 cups Granulated Sugar
 - 7 Eggs, room temperature
 - 1 cup Sour Cream
 - 3 cups All Purpose Flour
 - 1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
 - 1/4 teaspoon Baking Powder
 - 1 teaspoon Salt

Pound Cake Directions:
 - Heat oven to 300F. Grease and flour 3 loaf pans.
 - In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the Butter and Sugar together for 10 minutes, until light and fluffy.
 - While on a low speed, add in the Eggs, one at a time, scraping the sides as needed.
 - Add in the Sour Cream and mix to combine.
 - Sift together the Flour, Baking Soda, Baking Powder and Salt. Add into the egg mixture gradually.
 - Divide mix evenly between 3 loaf pans and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack and enjoy!

Until next time,

April 17, 2014

Strawberry, Pineapple and Banana Smoothie


A few of my Food Blogging Friends have posted some great looking smoothies recently and it totally got me in the smoothie mood. I hadn't made any since Baby L&C was born because I didn't know how she would react to a blender - turns out that kid can sleep through anything: vacuum, blender, people upstairs who sound like a herd of elephants...

April 14, 2014

Carrot Cake Muffins


 I don't know about you, but I L-O-V-E carrot cake. There is something about eating it that just feels right. I love it as a celebration cake - sheet cake, layer cake, loaf, muffins. I can't think of a way that I don't like carrot cake - especially when it is topped with a delicious cream cheese frosting.

Sometimes I put nuts in my carrot cake. I usually use walnuts, but decided to make a nut-free recipe today. These muffins are great warm, right out of the oven with some butter. I sometimes cut mine in half, put it in the toaster oven, then top it with some whipped cream cheese!

Carrot Cake Muffins
adapted from a culinary school recipe

Carrot Cake Muffin Ingredients:
 - 15 ounces All Purpose flour
 - 2 teaspoons Baking Powder
 - 2.5 teaspoons Baking Soda
 - 2 teaspoons Salt
 - 1 tablespoon ground Cinnamon
 - 2 sticks Unsalted Butter, room temperature
 - 8 ounces Granulated Sugar
 - 8 ounces Brown Sugar
 - 4 large Eggs
 - 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
 - 1 pound Carrots, peeled and grated
 - 5 ounces chopped Walnuts (optional)

Carrot Cake Muffin Directions:
 - Heat oven to 325F. Line cupcake tins with wrappers or coat using baking spray.
 - Sift together Flour, Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Salt and Cinnamon and set aside. If using walnuts, add them into the flour mixture now, so they get coated and won't sink to the bottom of the batter once mixed in.
 - Cream Butter, Granulated Sugar and Brown Sugar in the bowl of your stand mixer.
 - Add Eggs, one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition
 - Add Carrots and mix until incorporated.
 - Slowly add the flour mixture into the batter and mix well.
 - Portion into baking cups using a scoop to have uniform muffins.
 - Bake for 25-30 minutes or until done when a toothpick stuck into the center comes out clean.

Until next time,

Disclaimer: I received some packages of carrots from Gimmway Farms for #Brunchweek. I was not compensated for this post. All opinions are my own.

April 7, 2014

Easy Strawberry Shortcakes

Strawberry Shortcakes are the perfect quick dessert that's not too sweet and highlights those perfect berries!