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The truth was in the taste…..

November 15th, 2009 | 7 Comments »

If you saw a recipe for Nutella Swirl Pound Cake, you’d probably think like I did….

“That has to be amazing…..”

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It was amazing. In fact, amazing or fantastic or decadent or incredible might just begin to scratch the surface of expectation for something with Pound Cake and Nutella in the title. If you’ve got a better description, please share it with me, preferably over a slice of this cake and some dark coffee. I could use some help in making this disappear.

I don’t make pound cakes much at all. I mean, a cake in all it’s sponge-y glory is bad enough, the butter laden, sugar sweetened lofty treat. But a POUND cake? Equal gobs of butter, eggs and sugar that all come together to create a glorious dense concoction not only tastes amazing, but can do incredible things to your thighs. And not many of them good. And with Nutella on top of all that sugar. And butter. To have that temptation around, or get my guys used to such decadence would be evil for all of us. We have no resistance, no self control. I think I’ll stick to cookies. My feet can’t possibly handle all the cardio I would need to do to work off the calories in a cake such as this. I like my waistline.

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This cake came out of the oven, however, looking anything but fabulous. The top sunk, the crust was really crumbly and it seemed quite fragile. The bottom of the cake fell off as I tipped it out of the pan. But, it was utterly delicious, superbly rich and proof that even when it looks sad and forlorn, what it’s really all about anyway is how it dances across your tongue. It was so tantalizing in fact, once I was done photographing it’s sturdy swirled slices, I promptly wrapped the remainder of it tight and placed it in the freezer. If the threat of tooth-breakage looms, I won’t be so quick to indulge in a stolen bite or two. And my thighs will be pretty grateful for that. I’ll pull it out for Thanksgiving, maybe, or when there’s a need to share something that the comfort of chocolate and sugar, a close friend and a cup of tea can provide is the only requirement necessary.
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Nutella Swirl Pound Cake
From Food and Wine magazine, originally by Lauren Chattman, Cake Keeper Cakes

4 large eggs, at room temperature
2 t. pure vanilla extract
1-1/2 c. unbleached AP flour
3/4 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
1 c. butter, softened
1-1/4 c. sugar
1 13-oz jar Nutella spread

Heat oven to 325°. Spray a 9×5 cake pan with cooking spray. Dust with flour. Fill a bowl with hot tap water and place entire jar of Nutella in it to soften. Place the eggs and vanilla in a small bowl and whisk lightly to combine. Blend dry ingredients together in another small bowl.

In a stand mixer, blend the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the sides at least twice. Turn the mixer to medium-low and add the egg mixture in a steady stream, stopping to scrape down the bowl once or twice. Reduce mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture, about a half cup at a time, scraping the bowl after each addition. After the last addition, blend the full mixture together for 30 seconds on medium speed.

Scrape 1/3 of the batter into the prepared pan. Smooth with a spatula. With a clean spatula, spread half the Nutella on the batter and smooth. Add in another 1/3 of the cake batter, then the remaining Nutella. Spread the last of the cake batter on the top. With a clean butter knife, swirl the batter and Nutella together to create a marbling effect. Don’t overmix the two!

Bake the cake until it’s golden on top and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes in the pan, then turn cake out onto a wire rack to cool completely. This cake tastes excellent after spending a night in the refrigerator, wrapped tight in plastic. I don’t know why. But trust me on that.

KATE’S NOTES:
I may be labeled insane, but using the entire jar of Nutella is kind of overkill. The first issue is something I saw in all the photos of this cake across the internet, and is evident in mine. The Nutella sinks. It caused the bottom of my cake to scorch slightly, and the bottom fell off when I took the cake out of the pan. I think the same marbling affect could be achieved with less Nutella, and without the end result of it sinking. I think that the Nutella would be utilized better if drizzled over the layers of cake batter, and not swirled with a knife. This is just an opinion. I probably won’t make the cake again to see if it actually would make a difference. Although I might. If I’m desperate.

However, should the bottom of your cake fall off too, do what I did: I used a large spatula to gently scrape the stuck parts out of the pan and then I replaced them on the bottom of the cake. Once wrapped up and chilled, which I can’t recommend enough, it sort of glued itself back together. And despite how high and lofty your cake will look when it comes out of the oven, for whatever reason, it will sink. All the cakes I saw on the internet had the same sunken tops. Don’t despair. It isn’t your fault. It still tastes delicious.