We all know I'm an old school cook at heart. I love classic recipes, recipes people have been making in their kitchens for years notwithstanding technology or fancy tools. I love the stuff they made with love. I would rather have a small piece of something rich with butter and cream and full fat milk than a big bowlful of something made with genetically altered, fat free and made with sugar substitute. I guess I just like real food.
A friend posted pictures of the cake she made on her page and I could not believe my eyes. I had to have it, immediately. I copied the recipe for this classic, 'almost a pound cake but somehow richer and more delicious and sort of lighter too in a buttery sort of way' cake, I had to make it. I had to make it immediately.
I, as we all know, am incapable of following a recipe, even one handed down since who knows when. I apologize in advance for my version. I didn't make the ACTUAL recipe I was given but I was close.
The most shocking thing about this is that Connor (my 13 yr old son) LOVES this cake. That wouldn't be newsworthy if he liked ANY cake. He is not a sweets guy, doesn't like birthday cake or icing. He doesn't think flavors belong on the outsides of cakes in any fashion, no glaze, no dusting, no nothing. He loves this cake, did I mention that?
I made the cake yesterday, in an angel food pan, promptly delivered half to a girlfriend who was luckily celebrating a birthday and left the other half on the counter, assuming it would die a slow, stale death. NOT SO!
Connor ate slivers all day long and then, wait for it, asked me to make another one today. OH HECK YES!
So, without further ado, here it is, how *I* make the old school classic, 1 2 3 4 Cake.
CLASSIC 1 2 3 4 CAKE (my version)
1 cup butter (2 sticks) room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs (although mine are extra large)
3 cups all purpose flour
1 cup milk
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon juice
Here is my beautiful new angel food pan. I got it at Sur La Table at the Domain in Austin. Great price and super nice people. Anyway, in the bowl of a kitchenaid mixer (don't all my recipes start like this??) cream butter and sugar.
When it's all creamed and lovely, add 4 eggs, one at a time until it's well combined.
Give it a moment to mix up after the last egg then *purists avert your eyes* dump all 3 cups of all purpose flour, the baking powder and salt on top. You can mix it around if you want but I just dump it all in at once. Mix it slowly to combine.
As soon as it's JUST combined *don't over mix this* (and looks like cookie dough) add the milk in a slow steady stream. Oh look how cake dough-y it looks!!
Transfer the thick, light, airy batter into a lightly buttered pan. I use angel food but you can use a bundt pan of course.
Bake at 350 for an hour.
I remove it from the pan rather quickly once it's out of the oven because the angel food pan has the removable side and bottom. I would just leave it in a bundt pan. Brush the top of the warm cake lightly with melted butter (not much, just a little) and then sprinkle sugar on top. It adds a lovely little rich crunch to the top. I may make a light lemon glaze for half the cake, I don't want to change it up after we finally found a cake Connor likes!
Here's the requisite beauty shots! This cake is rich and light at the same time, it's a classic and it's clear to see why.
Go make this cake. Everyone will love it.
Go make something old school. There are classic recipes for a reason, even if I can't actually follow them :) and really, I only changed it up a little bit.