Friday, August 31, 2007

I'm Sorry, Mr. Clancy.

Please accept my most humble apologies for what I have done. I am certain that you would think this a travesty, but I have altered your pound cake recipe. Just a tidge.
I have deleted the two tablespoons of brandy (as we have none in our pantry and why would you add it anyway?) and increased the vanilla by a dash or two. Gone also is the mace, replaced by freshly grated nutmeg, its sister spice. A crunchy sugar topping, with the tiniest bit of nutmeg mixed in, is sprinkled on the top to make it sparkle in the sunlight from the kitchen window.
The result is a lovely cake, soft and delicate, that allows the subtle flavorings of organic vanilla and fresh nutmeg to sing through the pleasant mellowness of butter and eggs.
It is delightful, delicious, and just darn good, if I do say so myself.
It has become the favorite cake at our house. The one most requested by my daughter, who is very selective about what she eats, and is generally consumed on the day it is made.
Please close your eyes, as I am about to share the altered recipe here. Now. Quick, close them!
My Interpretation of John Clancy's Pound Cake
2 cups sifted, organic all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg*
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup (2 sticks) organic butter, room temperature
1 2/3 cups organic sugar
1 tsp. plus a dash or two of organic vanilla*
5 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp. sugar with a pinch of freshly grated nutmeg.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter and lightly flour a 9x5-inch loaf pan.
Sift together flour, cream of tartar, nutmeg and salt.
beat butter until is is creamy and add sugar gradually, beating until light and fluffy.
Mix in vanilla.
Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each one.
Add flour mixture to the butter mixture gradually, mixing just until blended after each addition.
Pour batter into pan and smooth the top.
Sprinkle with sugar and nutmeg mixture.
Bake for 1 hour 20-30 minutes, depending on your oven. When a toothpick, inserted in the center, comes out clean, it is done.
Remove from oven and cool on wire rack. Turn out cake and continute to cool on rack.
If you by chance have cake left at the end of the day, you will want to store it in an airtight container of some sort. Just make sure it is one that is noislessly accessible when you wake up for a midnight snack, so as not to awaken the rest of the household. :)

*- The original John Clancy recipe ( as found in Victoria's Sweet Baking book,1997) calls for 1/4 tsp. ground mace and the addition of 2 T brandy. Reduce vanilla to 1 tsp. if you choose to make it this way.


Joufknister said...

It's funny how you find blogs you like, and I don't remember exactly how I got here, but I feel right at home. Love your writing. Love the fact that the makings for filter roses are sitting in my garage and you've made them. Love that I made a a skirt for myself very similar style as you made. But mostly I LOVE your writing. Mabel story was very touching, and I look forward to making your remake of Mr. Clancy's Pound Cake.

MNScrapbookmom said...

This sounds all too yummy.. :) ¥

BeachysCapeCodCupboard said...

The pound cake recipe sounds delicious! I would have left out the brandy, too! =)

Beth Leintz said...

I like the part about midnight snacking- its amazing how much cake can disappear when you aren't watching!

The Feathered Nest said...

You are such a wonderful writer my dear! My cake is heavenly and I so appreciate your sweetness in bringing it to me. I'm very glad that I have met you sweet friend!! xxoo, Dawn

Brainiac's Daughter said...

Oh so many things right with this blog. Just sayin'.

Lori said...

i just saw on Dawn's blog the lovely cake you made for looks wonderful and so beautifully presented. how sweet...

The Feathered Nest said...

My eyes filled with tears as I read your sweet comment....I feel the same way, sweet Karin! I hope you have a wonderful week and I LOVE your photo on your blog!!! You're beautiful ~ xxoo, Dawn

tongue in cheek said...

I cannot wait to try this! What a clever way to introduce us to this recipe too!!