Mema’s pound cake

I was this close to not posting about my first experience making my grandmother’s pound cake recipe without my mom’s watchful eyes in the kitchen, but I decided that, really, I have nothing to lose. Most of you are blood relatives, so even if you think less of me for not being able to get the cake out of the pan, you can’t really do anything about it.

Yeah…I couldn’t get the cake out of the pan. Up until that point, things were going swimmingly—for me, making this cake was such a tangible way of remembering and honoring Mema. So that part was good. I even got to use my new hand mixer that Mary and Chuck (kinda) gave me for my birthday. Sidenote: gah, you know you’re old and lame when you want things like mixers for your birthday.

Who knew a mixer could look so imposing?

But I won’t focus on the pan snafu anymore, I promise. This really is the best pound cake I’ve ever had…impossibly moist, not cloyingly sweet—just as perfect for breakfast with a cup of coffee as it is for dessert topped with strawberries and whipped cream (or, if you’re Aunt Martha, chocolate-pecan icing). And Mema always had one on the cake stand in the kitchen, ready for the hungry horde. This pound cake is as much as part of my grandmother as her red lipstick and that one short-sleeved blouse with the beach-scene print on it. (I’m smiling thinking about that shirt.)

Before I get all teary, here’s the recipe. Just make sure to spray the pan really, really well. Trust me.

How could things go wrong when the recipe begins with BFFs butter and margarine?


Mema’s pound cake

1 stick of butter
1 1/2 sticks of margarine
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 cups cake flour
1 small can evaporated milk
2 tsp. vanilla

Cream the butter, margarine, and sugar.

I didn’t take a picture of this part of the mixing process, so this photo is acting as a stand-in. You can thank me later. (And is it just me, or is that beagle giving me the evil eye?)

Add the eggs one at a time.

Add the flour and milk, alternating between the two until it’s all added.

Add the vanilla and mix well.

Apologies for the shadows…why I decided to start baking this cake at 5pm on a Sunday afternoon is beyond me.

Spray a bundt pan very well with Baker’s Joy/Pam for baking. Pour the batter in the pan. (Duh.)

Cook in a 325º oven for one hour.

Let the cake rest for a little while; then, cover it with a plate and flip it over. The cake may or may not come out of the pan. Just sayin’.

This is what the cake looks like when it’s done. And still in the pan. On another note, I had no idea that Bundt is a registered trademark and apparently is Nordic in origin? Yeah. Made in Minneapolis, US of A.

I wish I had taken pictures of this, but I had about half of the cake left over after Laura Belle and Nicole had had their fill, so I decided to make bread pudding with the rest. I used this recipe from the Pioneer Woman as a guideline and it turned out amazing. Highly recommend!

And now here are some pictures I’ve taken recently of a tentative Spring springing in Seattle.

The Puget Sound and Olympic Mountains seen from Discovery Park. (Also below.)

At the top of Tiger Mountain.

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3 thoughts on “Mema’s pound cake

  1. What a sweet tribute to MeMa – I’m flooded with so many memories in my head and am crying as I type this. I miss the MeMa of pound cakes and roses. Papa and I are headed to Swainsboro tomorrow, so I’ll share this with him – he’ll love it!
    Like all the rest of us, he’s had more than a couple of pieces of this cake!

  2. Hey Lizzie! I am just catching up on the recipes/tributes you have posted the last few months.
    I myself have had that pound cake stick to the pan…just as delicious even if it does not look so nice!
    You hit everything about Mema spot on! I always leave your postings with a tear running down my cheek and a smile on my face.
    Can’t wait to see you!!!!

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