If you are looking for a special pound cake to prepare for a special gathering, consider this almond pound cake!
It is both dense and light, as all pound cakes should be; it's rich with the aroma of almonds from the almond paste in the batter, and speckled with orange zest throughout.
We've included a simple orange glaze, though this almond pound cake stands perfectly well enough on its own without it.
One of the things I love about pound cake is that you can slice it ever so thin. I'm one of those people who asks for a small slice of whatever treat is being offered, and then proceeds to go back for 2nds, 3rds, and 4ths. ("Why don't you just take a bigger piece to begin with???" "Sweetheart, I do it just to annoy you.")
Whether you take your first slice thick or thin, enjoy this almond pound cake elegant and unadorned, or top it with berries and whipped cream for an impromptu shortcake. If you are feeling especially adventurous, drizzle it with some amaretto for even more heady almond flavor.
Almond Pound Cake with Orange Glaze
Whenever baking with eggs, you'll get more rise if you start with eggs that are at room temperature. If you want to quickly bring chilled eggs up to room temp, place them in a bowl of warm (not hot) water for 10 minutes.
Tip on using Odense almond paste—grate it using the large holes of a box grater.
This recipe makes enough batter for one 5x9x3 inch loaf pan, which is a rather large loaf pan. If you have a 4x8x2 1/2 inch loaf pan, either make two loaves, or cut the recipe in half.
- 5 ounces (140 g) almond paste (we recommend Odense almond paste), grated
- 1 1/2 cups (300 g) white granulated sugar
- 4 ounces (1/2 cup or 1 stick) butter, room temperature
- 4 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup (120 g) plain (full fat) Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
- 1 1/2 cups (200 g) all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (if using unsalted butter)
- 1/3 cup (43 g) powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons orange juice
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
Preheat oven, prepare loaf pan:
Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease the inside of a 5x9x3-inch loaf pan with butter or with non-stick spray.
Beat almond paste, add sugar, butter, eggs, zest, vanilla, yogurt:
Using a stand mixer, beat the almond paste, starting at a low speed.
Slowly add the sugar to the almond paste while beating, gradually increasing the speed, until incorporated.
Add the butter, and beat until fluffy, smooth, and almost white, about 5-6 minutes, on high speed.
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating a minute after each addition.
Beat in the orange zest, vanilla, and Greek yogurt.
Whisk dry ingredients:
In a medium bowl, vigorously whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Stir the flour mixture into the butter, almond paste, egg mixture:
a third at a time, until well blended.
Pour batter into prepared loaf pan. Place on lower middle rack of your oven.
Bake at 325°F for 50-55 minutes, until golden brown, and if you press down lightly on the top it springs back at you, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. While it's baking, if you notice it getting too browned, tent it lightly with aluminum foil.
Cool on a rack:
Remove from oven and let cool on a rack for 5 to 10 minutes. Then carefully remove from the pan to cool completely on a rack.
Make orange glaze:
While the cake is cooling, make the glaze. Sift the powdered sugar through a sieve to remove any lumps and place in a medium bowl. Whisk in the orange juice and lemon juice. Stir in the the zest. Add more sugar if the glaze is too runny, add more juice if it is too thick for your taste.
Drizzle cake with glaze:
When the cake has cooled, place it on a serving plate and use a spoon to drizzle the glaze all over it.
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