The Flavors of Fall
“Of course it occurred to him that he might be wrong, that some misbegotten shadow had fallen across his face and warped his seeing. And so he cast back to the sharp picture in his head and knew that the eyes were smiling too. Twisted light could do one or the other but not both.”
East of Eden, John Steinbeck
Pumpkin spice fatigue? Election anxiety? Its real and I have the antidote. This pound cake makes a fall statement with browned butter, toasted pecans and real maple syrup. The aroma of buttery pecans and maple syrup are guaranteed to bring the fall cozy into your kitchen. Cozy is what we all could use. I’m determined to keep my sanity. My distracted mind can be coaxed back into focus by keeping my hands busy. I’ve ripped out most of the summer garden and started sewing again. It brings me joy that I have this place to share my passion for baking. Baking is special, it’s a bonus in our busy lives. A quick project for my hands and mind. A time to stop and enjoy.
Rich buttery pecans and real maple syrup come together in a pound cake that satisfies that craving for something sweet with fall flavors. Browned butter coupled with maple extract, bring more intense fall flavor. The aroma of the Maple Pecan Pound Cake baking is more than enough reason to give this easy recipe a try.
This recipe is adapted from Bon Appetit Desserts. The original recipe can be found here. I swapped out the walnuts for pecans and browned the butter too. If we’re going to bake our way deep into November it’s going to be worth the effort and calories. Slice thinly, more to share, more for later. Serve with tea or coffee. A mug of hot apple cider would be perfect. I found the tiny chocolate pumpkins at Traders Joe’s to decorate the cake, but more toasted pecans would be nice too.
|Maple Pecan Pound Cake|
|1-1/4C/10 oz||unsalted butter|
|1/2t||fine grain sea salt|
|1/2C||real maple syrup|
|1/4C- 2 oz||unsalted butter|
|2T||pure maple syrup|
|1/4t||fine grain sea salt|
- Prepare the browned butter by melting the butter in a saucepan or skillet with a light colored or shiny interior on medium heat. At first the butter may sputter as the milk solids cook. Gently swirl the pan until the milk solids are a warm toasty brown at the bottom of the pan. Set aside to cool. Reserve the pan to make more browned butter for the Maple Glaze.
- Heat the oven to 350°. Scatter the pecans across the surface of a sheet pan. Toast the pecans for 8-10 minutes. When ready the pecans will be a toasty brown, shiny and fragrant. Cool and then finely chop in a food processor or high powered blender. Leave the oven on at 350°.
- Grease and flour a 12-15 cup Bundt or other similar sized cake pan. Into a large bowl, sift or shake though a sieve the cake flour, baking power and salt.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer add the browned butter and sugar. Make sure to scrape out all the butter and browned bits from the bottom of the pan into the mixer bowl. Beat on medium-high speed until the mixture thickens and is opaque, 2-3 minutes. Mix in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after adding each egg. Stop occasionally to scrape down the side and bottom of the bowl. Mix in the maple syrup, maple extract and vanilla. The mixture should be well combined with no steaks of maple syrup. Add the flour mixture, mixing until just combined. Remove the beater and bowl from the stand mixer. Fold in the ground pecans, making sure to dip down and include all the batter. Scoop the batter into the prepared cake pan, spreading it evenly across the surface of the pan.
- Bake for 50-60 minutes. When ready a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake will come out cleanly. The cake will be browned along the edges and have pulled away from the edges of the pan. Let the cake cool for ten minutes in the pan, then loosen the cake from the pan with a small off-set spatula or knife. Invert or leave right side up, on a cake stand or plate to cool completely before gazing.
- To make the glaze cook the butter on medium heat. At first the butter may sputter as the milk solids cook. Gently swirl the pan until the milk solids are a warm toasty brown at the bottom of the pan. Remove from the heat and whisk in the maple syrup and cream. Over the top of the pan with the browned butter, sift or shake though a sieve the powdered sugar. Whisk in and add the maple extract and salt. Set aside to cool and thicken, 15-30 minutes, whisking occasionally.
When both the cake and glaze have cooled, pour the glaze over the cake. Let the glaze set, before slicing the cake.
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