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Sometimes the secret of a perfect pound cake lies in the small details, says Cordon Bleu chef Maya Patnaik Sibia

200 grams of castor sugar
200 grams of softened butter
200 grams of flour (sifted twice)
4 fresh large eggs (room temperature)
1 scraped vanilla bean


Preheat the oven 150 C (Convection)/ 170 C (Regular) for 15 minutes.

Brush loaf-tin with softened butter and dust with some flour (10 grams of each should do).
Cream the butter and sugar vigorously until it is light and fluffy (Scrape the bowl edges with a spatula so there are no lumps.).
Split the vanilla bean in half and scrape all the beans with a small spoon or knife. Add to the mixture.
Add the eggs and mix well.
Add the sifted flour and mix well.
Pour the batter into the greased tin.
Place the cake in the middle rack of your oven.
Set a timer and check after approximately 30 minutes*. You can do this by inserting a sharp knife or toothpick, which should come out clean. If the cake is still raw and the batter sticks, put it back in the oven and check at 5 minute intervals.
Once your cake is ready, set it on a cooling rack to cool. Unmould the cake by flipping the mould onto the rack gently. Place the cake on a platter of your choice and serve.

food – pound cake

Other Tips
This recipe is very versatile. Once you have mastered this basic recipe, feel free to experiment with additional flavours, which you can fold in at the end.
You can add 50–100 grams of chocolate chips (I love dark), switch the vanilla for some ground cinnamon or toss in your favourite nuts 50-100 grams. It’s really up to you.
Besides, the size of your oven and the mould all have an impact on the baking time. Finally, check the cake without opening the oven door first (unnecessary opening and closing can make your cake fall.) Your cake should have a nice golden colour and should have risen in the middle.

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