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Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze

Yields one 9x4-inch loaf (about 10–12 slices)1 cup dried currants½ cup liqueur (rum, brandy, or Cointreau)20 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 2 tablespoons for buttering the baking pan, softened at room temperature1 cup sugar2¼ cups spelt flour, sifted¼ teaspoon salt½ teaspoon baking powder5 eggs, cracked into small bowl¼ cup sour creamZest of 1 lemon (preferably organic)Glaze1 cup powdered sugar, sifted2 tablespoons pomegranate juice (or blood orange juice)½ teaspoon lemon juice {pinterest_rich_pins_images} Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze {/pinterest_rich_pins_images}

Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze

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    Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze
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    Soak the dried currants in your favorite liqueur
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    Sift the flour first
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    Sifted flour
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    Currants tossed in flour to prevent them from sinking to the bottom of the baking pan
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    Ready to go into the oven
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    Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze
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    Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze
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    Pour the glaze evenly over the cake. Scrape any glaze that pools around the cake with a spoon, and pour again over the cake.
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    Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze
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    Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze
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    Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze
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    Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze
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    Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze

Text, photos and food cooked by Michal Martinek

Feb 9, 2018

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Currant Pound Cake With Pomegranate Glaze

Size and looks matter to me when it comes to pound cake. For years, I was baking in a pan that was too wide and too low, resulting in subpar pound cakes. Edible, yes; pretty, no. I finally bought a professional, heavy-duty 9"x4" Pullman loaf pan—it comes with a lid, in case I wanted to make pain de mie—and right from the start, it was a game changer. The loaf was tall, narrow and dense, with right-angled sides and a beautifully cracked hump on top; when you sliced it, you got a satisfying single portion with the ideal ratio of cake, crust and glaze.

This recipe is simple and calls for easy-to-get ingredients. It uses dried currants standing in for raisins, which I don’t like. Feel free to use raisins or dried cranberries yourself, but coarsely chop either, because they’re bigger than currants. A cool trick I learned is to coat dried fruit in flour before you add it to the batter; that way, it will stay suspended throughout the cake instead of sinking to the bottom. The glaze is pink because it’s charming—and Valentine’s Day is around the corner—but a basic white one made from lemon juice would be as tasty. 

O

  1. Yields one 9x4-inch loaf (about 10–12 slices)
  2. 1 cup dried currants
  3. ½ cup liqueur (rum, brandy, or Cointreau)
  4. 20 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 2 tablespoons for buttering the baking pan, softened at room temperature
  5. 1 cup sugar
  6. 2¼ cups spelt flour, sifted
  7. ¼ teaspoon salt
  8. ½ teaspoon baking powder
  9. 5 eggs, cracked into small bowl
  10. ¼ cup sour cream
  11. Zest of 1 lemon (preferably organic)
  12. Glaze
  13. 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  14. 2 tablespoons pomegranate juice (or blood orange juice)
  15. ½ teaspoon lemon juice

1

For best results, before you start, make sure all ingredients—especially butter, eggs and sour cream—are at room temperature.

2

Soak the currants in the liqueur for minimum 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Butter a 9"x4" loaf pan and line with parchment paper, overhanging by about 2 inches.

3

Add the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Beat with an electric mixer at medium speed, scraping the sides with a spatula as you go, until pale, about 5 minutes.

4

Set aside ¼ cup of the flour. Beating at a low speed, gradually add the remaining 2 cups of the flour, baking powder, and salt to the butter mixture. Increase the speed back to medium and add the eggs, one at a time. Gently stir in the sour cream and lemon zest with a spatula or wooden spoon.

5

Drain the currants, and toss them well in a small bowl with ¼ cup of the flour (to prevent them from sinking to the bottom of the batter in the pan). Add the currants, including any leftover flour, to the batter and gently mix in. Discard the soaking liquid (or drink it—cheers!).

6

Pour the batter into the loaf pan, even out, and bake in the oven until golden brown, and a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the middle come out clean, about 1 hour and 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Run a knife along the pan edges, and lifting by the overhanging parchment paper sides, carefully transfer the cake from the loaf pan onto a cooling rack. Let cool completely.

7

Prepare the glaze. Add the sugar to a small bowl, and pour in the juices. Whisk until smooth and glossy, about 3 minutes.

8

Place the cake on a serving dish. Pour the glaze evenly over the cake. Scrape any glaze that pools around the cake with a spoon, and pour again over the cake. Let the glaze firm up. Slice and serve. The cake can be stored, covered with a kitchen towel, for up to 4 days.

Tip

You may also use two 8"x4" loaf pans and bake two cakes. Their size and shape will be different however.

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