Buttery, rich pound cake with a burst of blueberry and a zing of lemon.
Guessing that a lot of my readers may have consumed more than enough chocolate over the festive season (although that could just be me!), I went on an internet hunt for cake recipes which were “light”. And by light I don’t mean low calorie, but rather “refreshing” or “not sickly”. I came across the original recipe for this pound cake here, on Fine Cooking. I just converted the weights of the ingredients and made another couple of small tweaks.
If this is the first time you’ve heard of pound cake, it’s a close-textured, rich, moist sponge. This cake has a long baking time, but it’s worth it.
- 190 g / 6.75 oz / 1.5 cups plain flour
- 0.5 tsp baking powder
- 85 g / 3 oz / 3/8 cup cream cheese at room temperature (any brand you like)
- 115 g / 4 oz / 0.5 cup butter or margarine at room temperature
- 300 g / 10.5 oz / 1.5 cups caster sugar (the original recipe uses granulated, so that’s another option)
- 4 eggs at room temperature (large or medium will be fine)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Grated zest of 1 lemon (original recipe calls for 1 tsp of zest, but I find I need to use at least 1 whole lemon to get any lemon flavour into a cake. If you don’t like lemon you can leave this out)
- 150 g / 5 oz / 1 cup blueberries (I used frozen blueberries, but you can use fresh. You’ll need to adjust your baking time accordingly)
Prepare a loaf tin. The original recipe called by a 8 x 5 x 3 inch (20 x 13 x 8 cm) baking tin. My tin measures 10 x 4 x 3 inches (25 x 10 x 8 cm). As you can see, this left me with the same volume, and the cake turned out perfectly. So as long as your cake tin is approximately this size, you’ll be fine.
Grease the inside of your tin with a little butter and line it with greaseproof baking paper.
Pre-heat your oven to 160 degrees C (140 degrees C fan) / Gas Mark 3 / 325 degrees F.
In a large bowl, stir the baking powder through the flour and set to one side.
In an electric mixer or food processor, beat the butter and cream cheese together until very pale. Add the sugar and mix well until combined and slightly fluffy.
Add the eggs to the mix one at a time, beating between each addition until incorporated. With the mixer on a low setting, add the flour, vanilla and lemon zest and beat until almost combined. Take the bowl off the mixer and use a spatula to mix the batter until smooth, as shown in the picture below:
Fold the frozen blueberries into this mixture. Pour your pound cake batter into your prepared tin.
As I find that fruit tends to sink to the bottom of a cake, I reserved a few of the blueberries to pop on the top of the mixture just before putting it in the oven:
If you’re using fresh blueberries, bake for 60 to 65 minutes. If you’re using frozen blueberries (like me), bake for 75 to 90 minutes. You can check your blueberry pound cake is done by inserting a skewer, toothpick or knife into the centre. It should come out clean, not gooey. In my oven, the cake did need the full 90 minutes to bake, turning a lovely golden brown:
Leave the blueberry pound cake to cool in the tin for about 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to finish cooling completely before serving.
The pound cake slices beautifully and the outer crust has a lovely texture. In fact, this reminded me of blueberry muffins, just in cake form!
And if you’re looking for other recipes featuring berries:
Raspberry ripple sponge layer cake with raspberry buttercream.