Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Butter Cake! Butter Cake! Butter Cake!

This is one of my favorite desserts from my favorite cookbook.

The fact that this is my favorite cookbook speaks volumes about my butt, doesn't it?

I got this book years and years ago, and the recipe is called "Desert Island Butter Cake". (There is a printable .pdf version at the bottom of the post.) It's one of the simplest things ever to cook, calls for stuff you probably already have in the kitchen, takes no time at all, and is perfect for company. It's just a plain, moist, buttery cake that can be served with fresh fruit and whipped cream, chocolate sauce, ice cream, or completely nekkid! (The cake, not you. What you wear when you eat this is entirely up to you.) 

All you need is butter (of course), sugar, salt, eggs and flour. The recipe actually doesn't call for salt, but I have this thing with sweet - it absolutely has to be balanced with some salt or I won't give it the time of day.

Start by preheating the oven to 350F

Truly, I have the crappiest stove in the world. I could at least clean it, though, huh?

Lightly grease an 8-inch springform pan with butter or oil. Or Pam. Which is my preference, because it's easy. Then melt 1 cup of butter - that's two glorious sticks -  in a saucepan over low heat. Now, listen. For a cake like this, the quality of the butter can make a big difference. There's nothing to mask the flavor, so if you have it available, buy some good butter. I happen to love Plugra. When you open a package of Plugra, it reaches up, grabs you by the collar, slams your head into the counter repeatedly and yells "BUTTER! BUTTER! BUTTER!" But in a non-agressive kind of way. Seriously, it's killer and yes you can tell the difference between it and the stuff I buy in multiple packs at Costco to dip the dogs' pills in so they'll take them.

While the butter is melting, beat the 3 large eggs and 1 cup of sugar (and 1/2 tsp. salt) together until it's pale and thick. About four minutes. Keep an eye on the butter. You don't want to burn it.

Look at it go!
These are my grandmother's measuring spoons, by the way.

While you're beating the ever-livin' daylights out of the eggs and sugar, sift 1 cup of flour. All purpose, unbleached, please. I remember when we first got married, my husband called his mom and tattled on me because I didn't sift stuff when I was supposed to. I think she basically said "She'll learn." Which I did. If you want this cake to be all that, sift the flour. Like I did. Do. Whatever.
This sifter is 19 years old. I'm older.

When the butter and egg mixture is done, it will be thick and pale, as I've mentioned. Something like this:

Bad picture, but see, thick and pale. Just like me.

Hope you didn't put the sifter up, because you're going to use it again. Remove the bowl from the mixer. The rest of this you're going to do by hand. (Oh, don't whine - it's easy.) Take the flour you just sifted and RE-sift it over the egg mixture. (Again, stop with the whining. It's light work.)

Just gently sift it right on top.

Now, gently start folding in the flour.

Gently. See? I told you it was light work.

Before the flour is completely incorporated, pour in all that delicious melted butter!
Oh, my love. You make me want to sing.

Now fold the butter into the batter
It will look broken for a while, but just keep folding. It will come together.

Pour it into the prepared pan.

If you don't have a springform pan, just use a cake pan.

Bake it for about 30 minutes. It will spring back when you touch it when it's done. Try not to overcook it, or it will get a little dry.

It will pull away from the sides on its own and come loose pretty easily.

I served mine with fresh strawberries and whipped cream flavored with a little almond extract and sugar.

I'm just going to put it out there that NC strawberries got nothin' on Arkansas strawberries. I do miss those. They're sweeter and more flavorful. But these were pretty good.

Bite removed for demonstration purposes only.

I swear I fed the whole thing to him.


Excuse me. I mean, him.


Maggy@ThreeManyCooks said...

That cake looks so good! The strawberries and cream sent me over the top. Can it be my birthday cake? ;)

Andie Reid said...

Yes! It will take someone 15 minutes to put together. :)

Nicole said...

I think I laughed out loud three or four times reading this post. I think the fact that my Kitchen Aid stand mixer is my favorite appliance speaks volumes about my butt. :)