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Surface of pound cake - issues...

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I've made a pound cake in a loaf pan. Instead of the cake rising in the form of a pyramid and then forming a nice longitudinal groove down the middle, the whole surface rises and the top is flat. Also, instead of the top surface being tender, it has a definite crust which is firm. I'm interested to know the reason for all of this. It seems likely related to the proprotion of the various ingredients and I was wondering whether anyone had any thoughts...
post #2 of 14
Please post your recipe and menthod so we can get an idea of your cake.
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post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
1c butter, 2c sugar, 23/4c flour (ap), 4 eggs + 1 yolk, 1/4c lemon juice, 1t bp.
Thanks.
post #4 of 14
I would up the sugar to 3 cups, use 5 whole eggs instead of 4 and a yolk,drop your flour to 3 cups, add salt, milk and shortening. I don't know but your formula looks a little lopsided I cannot exactly tell what it is other than your flour to sugar ratio is a little off. Take a look at this recipe:

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Pound-Cake-III/Detail.aspx

It may give you some ideas on what happened. Maybe someone else can help I hope. I do not understand the reasoning for lemon juice I would have used cream of tartar.

Rgds Rook
post #5 of 14
Kevinm,
With most pound cake recipes, you need to create a place for the top to split and rise open. The easiest way is to soften some butter and put it in a pastry bag or a paper funnel and pipe a line straight down the middle where you would like it to seperate. The line should be 1/8th to a 1/4" wide. You can also use shortening, marg etc.
HTH
Pan

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post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Pan, when do you do that - when it goes in the oven or during the baking sometime?
post #7 of 14
you pipe it on just before baking. It will dissipate but leave the stripe soft enough for it to seperate easily. It doesn't hurt to have the stripe cooler then the mix.
does that make sense? Sorry.I'm sittin here with one eye open. Doing 2005 tax returns, deadline tomorrow. I don't like to rush to get taxes done:D
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post #8 of 14
I'm guessing tghe problem is in either the heat of the oven, (too cool, since i think the faster cooking raises the center which having risen a lot, then cracks to rise more) and the crust being too thick would also be due to a hot oven.
Also I would guess that the method of mixing would be crucial here too, and you didn;t post that. Melting the butter and mixing into beaten eggs would possibly make for a more battery cake and a lower flat top.
I would do the creaming cold or softened butter with sugar then eggs, then fold in the dry.
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post #9 of 14
When creaming the butter and sugar, never use melted butter. Soften the butter at room temperature; never heat it to soften. A hint for faster softening: cut the butter into thin slices and place each slice singly along the bottom and sides of a stainless steel bowl. You'll have softened butter in no time.

Next, the creaming is probably the most important step in making a pound cake. Cream the butter and sugar together for at least 5-7 minutes using a stand mixture, or up to 10 minutes using an electric hand mixture.

Also, use cake flour instead of all-purpose flour. The "crumb," or texture, of a pound cake depends on the flour and the creaming.
post #10 of 14
Oops - i meant that usually a low oven is the cause of a thicker crust, since it sits there longer, and the heat only gets outside, especially if the top hasn;t risen properly. I believe the same considerations for muffins, which practically any home cookbook will explain complete with illustrations - the low top muffin is from a too cold oven.
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #11 of 14
Adding to Pans advice, we use to take a dough scraper or icing smoother and plunge it in the middle of the cake batter it created a perfect little crevice right down the middle of the cake after it baked do not know exactly why it worked but it did!

Rgds Rook
post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks all for your suggestions. When creaming the butter and the sugar, any guidelines re the speed i.e. using a stand mixer should the creaming be at maximum power or doesn't it matter much?
post #13 of 14
I would suggest medium speed but thats me be about 5 or 6 on a KA.

Rgds Rook
post #14 of 14
Rook,
Thanks, I forgot that, it works well.

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