peach-riesling sangria

sangria 5

This recipe is delicious, easy, light, summery, and goes well with a variety of foods. With that list of compliments, you can probably tell that it’s one of my favorite summer drinks, especially when I’m serving a crowd. I like it even more than traditional red wine-based sangria.

peach sangria 1

I love how, between the sliced peaches, peach liqueur, and cranberry peach juice, it actually tastes peachy. The raspberries are mostly for decoration, but they certainly are a pretty one. Plus, if you manage to fish them out of the steeped liquid without smooshing them, the boozy berries are a nice treat.

peach sangria

Other than slicing some fruit, you just mix a bunch of stuff in a pitcher, wait a day, and then you’ve got enough drinks for a group. However, I made a single recipe for six people to go along with afternoon cheese and crackers, and we all agreed that we wanted more. Fortunately, making another batch is no problem at all.

peach sangria 4

Peach-Riesling Sangria (slightly adapted from Bon Appetit via epicurious)

The original recipe also includes the seeds from a vanilla bean, but the black specks floating in the drink looked unappetizing and didn’t add noticeable flavor. I leave the vanilla out entirely, but a teaspoon of extract would be good too. I also cut the orange and lemon slices a little thinner, which I think looks nicer in a clear glass.

1 (750-ml) bottle dry Riesling
1½ cups white cranberry-peach drink
½ cup peach schnapps
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons sugar
2 ½-inch-thick lemon slices
2 ½-inch-thick orange slices
2 peaches, cut into wedges
10 fresh raspberries

Combine all ingredients in a pitcher. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Serve over ice.

peach sangria 3

Save

raspberry cream cheese brownies

raspberry cheesecake brownies 4

My mom has a new favorite dessert, and I am not surprised. The two of us have been big fans of the chocolate/cheesecake/raspberry combination since I was in high school and she was a teacher, and we took a day of our spring break to check out the new mall across town. My clearest memory from that day is sharing a slice of chocolate raspberry cheesecake. A few weeks later, I drove back out to that mall to pick up another slice to give her for Mother’s Day. When my mom developed her own chocolate raspberry cheesecake recipe, it became one of my most-requested birthday cakes.

raspberry cheesecake brownies 1

So when I made these brownies, I was sure to save her a piece. It did not occur to me to also save my dad a piece, and since my mom was nice enough to share, she really only got a nibble. Fortunately, that nibble was enough to convince her to make them herself just a few days later.

raspberry cheesecake brownies 2

The raspberry jam is both mixed into the chocolate portion and swirled into the cheesecake batter, so it isn’t just a pretty red swirl; the flavor stands out in every bite, vying for attention with the rich chocolate and tangy cheesecake. This is a well-deserved favorite.

raspberry cheesecake brownies 5

Printer Friendly Recipe
Raspberry Cream Cheese Brownies (from Cook’s Illustrated’s Summer Entertaining via Pink Parsley)

Filling:
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
¼ cup (1.75 ounces) sugar
1 egg yolk
¾ teaspoon vanilla extract

Brownies:
⅔ cup (3.35 ounces) all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
½ cup raspberry jam
1¼ cups (8.75 ounces) granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil. leaving the excess hanging over the edges. Grease foil. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the cream cheese, sugar, egg yolk, and vanilla. Set aside.

2. Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Microwave the chocolate and butter in a large bowl, stirring after every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth. Whisk in ¼ cup jam and allow the mixture to cool slightly. Add sugar, eggs, and vanilla to the chocolate mixture, and stir until combined. Whisk in flour mixture until just incorporated.

3. Microwave the remaining ¼ cup jam until warm, about 30 seconds, and stir until smooth. Scrape half the brownie batter into the prepared baking dish. Dollop the cream cheese by the spoonful over the batter, and spread into an even layer. Drop spoonfuls of warm jam over the cream cheese, and use the tip of a knife to swirl jam through the filling. Spread the remaining batter evenly over the filling.

4. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few dry crumbs attached, 50 to 60 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for at least 2 hours. Using the foil overhang, lift the brownies from the pan and cut into squares.

raspberry cheesecake brownies 3

roasted chicken with caramelized shallots

shallot chicken 4

I’ve always liked Saturday dinners to be special – more meat-oriented and complex than our usual weeknight vegetarian one-bowl dinners. On Saturday, it’s not uncommon that I’ll choose our wine first, and then decide what we’ll eat to go with it. However, my days of spending hours preparing seven tiny courses are definitely on hold.

shallot chicken 1

Now I try to choose dishes that can be almost completely prepped in advance, in hopes that Dave and I get to eat at the same time and without listening to a tired baby whine. This worked out perfectly with this dish, because I got the chicken ready to bake in the afternoon, then when the baby woke up from her evening catnap, I put it in the oven to roast while I fed her.

shallot chicken 2

It also helps that “prepped in advance” took less than ten minutes. Such a small amount of effort resulted in a dish with plenty of flavor. It was definitely worthy of a special Saturday night dinner – and the wine didn’t hurt either.

shallot chicken 5

Roasted Chicken with Caramelized Shallots (from Susan Herrmann Loomis’s French Farmhouse Cookbook via Elly Says Opa)

3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
4 shallots, peeled & sliced
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
minced parsley for garnish

1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees. In a baking dish big enough to fit the chicken in a single layer, combine the oil, vinegar, soy sauce, shallots, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken and turn to coat with the shallot mixture. Arrange the chicken skin-side up.

2. Transfer to the oven and roast for 20 minutes. Turn the chicken pieces over, coating them again with the shallot mixture. Continue to roast until the shallots are caramelized and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a chicken breast reads 165 degrees, about 20 minutes more. Remove from the oven and let rest about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.

shallot chicken 3

Save

belgian brownie bites

belgian brownie bites 4

I know I titled these tiny brownies ‘bites’, but that doesn’t mean I think they should actually be eaten in one bite. Something this rich and chocolately should be savored, at least to my mind. Dave, however, popped them whole into his mouth.

belgian brownie bites 1

These are so rich that tiny mini-muffin cup servings really are appropriate. With just a smidgen of flour for almost half a pound each of chocolate, butter, and sugar, they’re almost mousse-like.

belgian brownie bites 3

For me, that means I enjoy them slowly, relishing each decadent nibble. I guess for others, one bite is the way to go. Either way, they’re so good that it’ll be hard to resist another.

belgian brownie bites 5

Belgian Brownies Bites (rewritten but not really adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

24 mini muffin-sized bites or 12 regular muffin-sized brownies

7 ounces bittersweet chocolate, roughly chopped
14 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes
1 cup (7 ounces) sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon flour

1. Set a heatproof bowl over a saucepan containing one inch of simmering water. Add the chocolate and butter; stir occasionally until the chocolate is smooth, then remove from the heat. (The chocolate and butter can also be melted on 50% power in the microwave, stopping to stir every thirty seconds or so.) Whisk in the sugar and salt until smooth, then add the eggs one at a time, whisking until incorporated before adding the next. Gently whisk in the flour. Cover and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.

2. Heat the oven to 325 degrees. Spray a mini muffin pan (or regular muffin pan) with oil.

3. Divide the batter between 24 mini muffin cups (or 12 regular muffin cups). Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a brownies comes out dry or with a few moist crumbs attached, about 16 minutes (26 minutes for regular muffin cups). Transfer to a cooling rack for approximately 5 minutes, then remove brownies from the pan to cool completely on a rack.

belgian brownie bites 6

broiled salmon with marmalade-mustard glaze

marmalade mustard salmon 6

While I nursed the four-day-old baby, my mother-in-law asked when we wanted to eat dinner. She said it would take fifteen minutes to cook, and I told her that I should be ready by then, not having yet figured that the baby likes to savor her meals and takes far longer than fifteen minutes to eat.

marmalade mustard salmon 1

But I also didn’t believe my mother-in-law that she could make a full meal in someone else’s kitchen in fifteen minutes. However, it turns out that not everyone makes things as complicated as I do, and this easy dish served with instant rice and steamed broccoli was ready long before the baby was finished eating. It was the not the last time I’d eat my dinner lukewarm after the baby ate hers fresh.

marmalade mustard salmon 4

It was also not the last time we’d eat this dish. A recipe that can be made in an unfamiliar kitchen in fifteen minutes is a good one to have around. The glaze has plenty of flavor to spread around the whole meal, so I often serve it over a simple quinoa pilaf with vegetables mixed in. As a bonus, it tastes almost as good lukewarm as it does hot from the oven.

marmalade mustard salmon 5

Broiled Salmon with Marmalade-Mustard Glaze (slightly adapted from Cooking Light)

Serves 4

½ cup orange marmalade
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced or pressed through a press, or ½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
4 (6-ounce) salmon fillets

1. Adjust an oven rack to 6 inches below the broiler. In a medium bowl, combine the marmalade, mustard, garlic, salt, and pepper.

2. Arrange the salmon in a broiler-safe dish, skin-side down. Spread half of the marmalade mixture over the salmon.

3. Broil until the glaze is bubbling, about 6 minutes. Spread the remaining marmalade mixture over the salmon, and continue to broil until the salmon breaks into flakes or reads 125 degrees on an instant-read thermometer, about 2 additional minutes. Serve.

marmalade mustard salmon 7

cheesecake thumbprint cookies

cheesecake thumbprints 5

You’d think that since I’m home all day for a few months, I’d be more likely to get recipes out of my cookbooks instead of the internet. I certainly thought I would, especially considering that I keep making New Year’s resolutions to use my cookbooks more often. However, at home as well as at work, the internet beckons and my cookbook shelf goes mostly ignored.

cheesecake thumbprints 1

But clearly, there is good stuff on that shelf that is being missed. This recipe might have caught my eye online, but I wonder if I would have then looked for something similar but more familiar. With such a small amount of sugar in the cookie portion, this was just a little out of my comfort zone.

cheesecake thumbprints 2

I stuck to the recipe though, and I’m glad I did. While the base was, as expected, not too sweet, it wasn’t too unsweet either. Maybe that helps to highlight the cheesecake portion, which, cheesecake being one of my favorite foods, is my favorite part. This is a great reminder of why I keep telling myself that I should use those cookbooks; maybe this time it will stick.

cheesecake thumbprints 4

Cheesecake Thumbprints (rewritten from Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook)

Makes about 3 dozen cookies

4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup (3.5 ounces) granulated sugar, divided
¼ teaspoon salt, plus a pinch
2 large egg yolks, divided
1½ teaspoons sour cream or greek yogurt
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups (9.6 ounces) all-purpose flour

1. In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add ¼ cup (1.75 ounces) sugar, a pinch of salt, one egg yolk, the sour cream or greek yogurt, and vanilla extract; mix until smooth. Chill for at least 30 minutes.

2. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.

3. In a large bowl, mix the butter, ¼ cup (1.75 ounces) sugar, and ¼ teaspoon salt until smooth. Add the other egg yolk and mix until blended, then add the flour and mix on low speed until just combined.

4. Form the dough into balls approximately 1-inch in diameter and place on the prepared baking sheets. Use the round back of a spoon or your finger (I used a round teaspoon measuring spoon) to press indentations in the middle of each ball of dough.

5. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove the pans from the oven and press down the indentations again (I used a tablespoon measuring spoon this time). Return the pans to the oven and bake until the edges of the cookies begin to brown, 7 to 9 minutes. Transfer the pans to wire racks; let the cookies cool completely.

6. When the cookies are cooled, spoon the cheesecake filling into the indentations. Return the cookies to the oven and bake until the filling is set, 7 to 8 minutes. Transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool completely. Chill the cookies at least 4 hours (or overnight) before serving.

cheesecake thumbprints 6

skillet turkey meatballs with lemony rice

lemon turkey meatballs 5

Maybe we’re getting the hang of things. I’m still depending heavily on my freezer meals, but I can count on being able to cook a few nights per week. Last weekend, I even made salmon cakes, broiled asparagus with shallot-lemon vinaigrette, and biscuits for dinner one night. I prepped it all ahead of time, and then when we put the baby down to sleep, I finished cooking everything, plated it, poured the wine – and the baby woke up. Something else I’m getting the hang of: feeding myself while feeding the baby.

lemon turkey meatballs 3

I made this back when she was just three weeks old, when we definitely did not have the hang of things. But I got ahead of the game by making the meatballs (a double batch, with extra to freeze) in the afternoon. The dish is easy enough that it wasn’t much trouble to finish it up when the baby was sleeping that evening.

lemon turkey meatballs 2

And then she woke up while it was cooking, and I fed her, and since I wasn’t proficient at feeding myself while feeding the baby then, I ate my meatballs and rice lukewarm. Fortunately, this is a meal that tastes just fine at room temperature – lemony and light, but substantial enough to last through a night of baby-feeding. However, it was even better when I made it again a few weeks later and got to eat it hot.

lemon turkey meatballs 4

Skillet Turkey Meatballs with Lemony Rice (adapted from Cook’s Country via Elly Says Opa)

Serves 4

½ cup panko bread crumbs
1 large egg
6 scallions, white and green parts separated, divided
¼ cup freshly chopped parsley, divided
½ teaspoon dried oregano
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest, divided
1 pound ground turkey
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup white rice
3 cloves garlic, minced
2¼ cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup (1 ounce) grated parmesan cheese
lemon wedges for serving

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the panko and egg. Set aside, stirring occasionally, until the panko is moistened, about 15 minutes. Add 2 tablespoons of the scallion greens, 3 tablespoons parsley, the oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper, and 1½ teaspoons lemon zest; stir to combine. Add the turkey; mix thoroughly. Form the mixture into balls approximately 1-inch in diameter; you should have about 24 meatballs.

2. In a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil until it flows like water when the pan is tilted. Arrange the meatballs in the pan with space between them. Cook without stirring until the bottom sides are brown, about 2 minutes. Flip and brown the opposite side. Transfer the browned meatballs to a plate.

3. Leaving the remaining fat in the skillet, add the rice. Cook, stirring constantly, until the grains are translucent at the edges, 1-2 minutes. Add the garlic and scallion whites and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the chicken broth, lemon juice, and 1½ teaspoons lemon zest; stir to combine, then arrange the meatballs in the rice. Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the rice is tender and the meatballs are cooked through, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let set, covered, for an additional 5 minutes. Uncover and top with the parmesan cheese, remaining scallion greens, and remaining parsley; serve, with additional lemon wedges.

lemon turkey meatballs 6

strawberry and chocolate cupcakes

strawberry chocolate cupcakes 6

There were probably better things I could have been doing with my time instead of making fancy cupcakes. Surely I should be focusing on easier, more straightforward treats right now. Even better, I had planned to get the flower garden ready for spring that Sunday afternoon. Or I could clean my house. Instead, I couldn’t resist the siren call of my mixer, plus butter, sugar, and flour.

strawberry chocolate cupcakes 1

It went about how most things do these days: I thought I’d have enough time to get the batters made and the cupcakes in the oven, but the baby woke up earlier than expected. Once she’d eaten and we gave her a bath and read a few books to her, I hurried back to finish the cupcakes while Dave took a turn trying to get her to sleep. Then he removed the cupcakes from the pan while I took my turn trying to get her to sleep.

strawberry chocolate cupcakes 2

Baking, frosting, and garnishing cupcakes all in one day is nearly impossible right now, at least if I want to do anything else with my time, like dress the baby up in silly outfits and take pictures. I packed the cupcakes away overnight, then got halfway through making the frosting the next morning when the baby woke up earlier than expected. (The baby almost always wakes up earlier than expected, unless she sleeps for hours longer than expected.)

strawberry chocolate cupcakes 3

Fortunately, I was able to finish the toppings when Dave came home for lunch. He took most of the cupcakes to share at work, and I stashed a couple away for a well-deserved treat for myself. I’ll work in the garden next week (unless I find another fun dessert to bake instead).

strawberry chocolate cupcakes 4

Strawberry Chocolate Cupcakes (cake recipes are both adapted from Alyssa Huntsman’s and Peter Wynne’s Sky High: Irresistible Triple Layer Cakes via Smitten Kitchen; chocolate frosting is from Martha Stewart)

Makes 24 cupcakes

I’m years overdue for a thorough chocolate cupcake comparison, but right now, I’m really happy with this recipe. It’s chocolately, tender, and moist.

A friend gave me this fun cupcake batter divider, but I’m sure you can just simultaneously spoon both batters into the cups.

Strawberry cake:
1 cup (4 ounces) cake flour
1 cup (7 ounces) sugar
1¾ teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup pureed frozen strawberries (from about 5 ounces of strawberries)
3 egg whites
3½ tablespoons milk
1 drop red food dye, optional

Chocolate cake:
1 cup (4 ounces) cake flour
1 cup (7 ounces) sugar
½ cup (1.5 ounces) unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup buttermilk, room temperature
1 egg
½ cup freshly brewed coffee, cooled to room temperature

Frosting and garnish:
7 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1½ cups (6 ounces) confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
pinch salt
½ cup sour cream
12 strawberries, halved through the stem

1. To make the cupcakes, adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 24 cupcake wells with paper liners.

2. For the strawberry cake: Put the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large mixer bowl. With an electric mixer on low speed, blend for 30 seconds. Add the butter and strawberry puree and mix to blend, then raise the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.

3. In another large bowl, whisk together the egg whites, milk, and red food dye, if using. Add the egg white mixture to the batter in two or three additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl well and mixing only to incorporate after each addition. Set aside.

4. For the chocolate cake: In a large mixer bowl, combine the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. With an electric mixer on low speed, blend for about 30 seconds. Add the butter and buttermilk and blend on low until moistened. Raise the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.

5. Whisk the eggs and coffee together, and add to the batter in 3 additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl and beating only until blended after each addition.

6. Simultaneously spoon the two batters into each cupcake well, filling them about two-thirds full. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 18-20 minutes. Cool the cupcakes in the pans on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove them from the wells and cool completely on the rack.

7. For the frosting: Melt the chocolate in a heat-proof bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Set aside to cool until just barely warm.

8. In a large mixer bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Gradually mix in the confectioners’ sugar, cocoa powder, and salt. Beat in the melted and cooled chocolate and then the sour cream. Continue beating until the mixture is smooth and well blended. Frost cupcakes immediately. Top each cupcake with a strawberry half.

strawberry chocolate cupcakes 5

lahmahjoon (armenian lamb pizza)

lamb pomegranate pizza 3

Pizza was the first thing I cooked after having the baby. I’d prepped the dough, made the sauce, shredded the cheese, and sliced the pepperoni before going to the hospital, but even so, three days after giving birth, putting it all together and sliding it into the oven was about all I could handle. I was grateful that my mom and mother-in-law cooked the rest of the meals that first week.

lamb pomegranate pizza 1

It’s over a month later, and now I’m actually able to make a pizza with toppings that require chopping and pre-cooking. This pizza isn’t difficult, and it’s one of my favorites for when I want something nontraditional. I have a bottle of pomegranate molasses that I impulse-bought from The Spice House, but I think you could just add twice the amount of pomegranate juice and let it reduce. I often don’t like cinnamon in savory recipes, but the flavor blends in perfectly here.

lamb pomegranate pizza 2

We still took turns eating while the other soothed the baby, but at least we got to eat something that wasn’t made specifically because it takes well to freezing. We’re making progress! And I’m grateful, because it means more meals like this.

lamb pomegranate pizza 6

Lahmahjoon (Armenian Lamb Pizza) (adapted from Eating Well)

See here for baking instructions using a baking steel.

I used a slicing tomato instead of plum tomato because Dave did the shopping and I forgot to specify which type I wanted. But you should use plum tomatoes if you can.

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 shallots, minced
8 ounces ground lamb
½ teaspoon salt
4 medium plum tomatoes, chopped
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 pound prepared pizza dough
⅓ cup (2 ounces) crumbled feta
1 tablespoon pine nuts
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

1. Place a pizza stone on the lowest rack in the oven; heat the oven to its highest setting, at least 500 degrees. Line a pizza peel or the back of a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a medium skillet over medium heat, heat the oil, then add the shallots. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the lamb and salt, and cook, stirring to break up the meat, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook until they begin to break down, about 3 minutes. Stir in the pomegranate molasses, cinnamon, and pepper.

3. Divide the dough in half. Stretch a portion of dough to a 10-inch round; lay it on the parchment paper. If necessary to even out thick areas and fix the shape of the dough, pull the edges to an even circle. Spread half of the lamb mixture over the dough, then top with half of the feta and pine nuts.

4. Transfer the pizza on the parchment paper to the heated stone. Cook until the bottom of the crust is spottily browned, 6-7 minutes. Use the metal spatula and pizza peel to remove the pizza from the oven and transfer it to a cooling rack. Sprinkle half of the parsley evenly over the pizza. Cool for about 5 minutes before cutting and serving. Repeat with the remaining dough and toppings.

lamb pomegranate pizza 5

rhubarb sour cream pound cake

rhubarb pound cake 5

The newborn stage hit all of us hard – including the baby, who apparently found life outside the womb to be unsatisfactory. I was grateful for a freezer full of dinners, although I did manage to do some simple baking – chocolate chip cookies, pound cake. My favorite recipes, made almost more for the comfort of going through the motions, of feeling like me, than to have a delicious dessert to share and enjoy.

rhubarb pound cake 1

I’m hesitant to put this in writing, but things are a little better now. We’ve figured out how to calm the baby’s cries (usually), she smiles and even sometimes coos, and we’ve learned to adapt to a routine where nothing is really routine. For example, I learned the hard way, when a pissed off hungry baby had to wait to eat until the cookies I’d just put in the oven were done baking, that I can’t bake unless Dave is home to take things out of the oven if necessary. Also, it’s best if I divide up the baking as much as possible; for one cake I made recently, I had the measured dry ingredients and the baking pan sitting by the mixer for almost a week until I finally got a chance to mix it all together.

rhubarb pound cake 4

This cake was slightly more impromptu, only because the days before I baked it had gone so fast I couldn’t make time to prepare the ingredients. Fortunately, the baby had a particularly sleepy day on the last day of the weekend, and I was able to mix and bake a cake. She woke up hungry when I was doing the final mixing of the dough, so Dave did his best to soothe her while I rushed to get the cake in the oven. I left myself a bit of batter in the mixing bowl to enjoy after the nursing session. After this last month, I definitely deserve a treat.

rhubarb pound cake 7

Rhubarb Sour Cream Pound Cake (rewritten and slightly adapted from Cook’s Country)

16 servings

The original recipe is for cranberries (fresh or frozen), but I’ve found that rhubarb and cranberries are interchangeable in baked recipes like this. I also doubled the recipe so I could bake it in a bundt pan instead of a loaf pan.

10 large eggs, at room temperature
4 teaspoons vanilla extract
3½ cups (17.5 ounces) all-purpose flour
1½ plus ¼ teaspoons salt, divided
1 teaspoon baking powder
⅔ cup sour cream
½ cup milk
28 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
2½ cups (17.5 ounces) granulated sugar
2 cups (8 ounces) finely diced rhubarb
2 tablespoons powdered sugar

1. Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Grease and flour (or spray with baking spray) a 12-cup bundt pan. In a medium bowl, combine the eggs and vanilla. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, 1½ teaspoons salt, and baking powder. In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream and milk.

2. In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl with a hand-held mixer), beat the butter on medium speed until smooth. Gradually add the granulated sugar, then increase the mixer speed to medium-high and continue to beat for another 3-4 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary, until the mixture is pale and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to medium; gradually add the egg mixture. Scrape the sides of the bowl, then continue to mix on medium speed until evenly mixed; the mixture will probably look curdled. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add one-third of the flour mixture, followed by half of the sour cream mixture, another third of the flour, the remaining sour cream, and the remaining flour. Mix until almost combined, with a few streaks of flour remaining.

3. Toss the rhubarb with the powdered sugar and remaining ¼ teaspoon salt. Add the rhubarb to the batter and use a large rubber spatula to fold it in until the rhubarb is evenly incorporated and the batter is thoroughly mixed. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan.

4. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 1½ to 2 hours. Transfer to a wire rack; cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then invert the cake onto the rack. Cool the cake completely, about two hours, before serving. Tightly wrapped, the cooled cake can be stored for up to three days.

rhubarb pound cake 6