We are on a roll here. The second cake in a row from the Quick & Easy list (I hate to break this to you, but there are only 3 cakes left to do on that list, which may mean we have some killers ahead of us). That is, we will have some exciting challenges.
Most people loved these easy little gems, although several missed the richness that egg yolks generally bring to something named "pound cake," and a few thought the cake was just okay.
Jennifer, for example, was just a wee bit grumbly when she discovered there were no egg yolks in the cake, but she recovered, and admitted that once she got "over the lack of egg yolk, they really are quite lovely. Almost tea cake-like in their dense crumb, and with wonderful flavor." See, she's really quite open-minded.
Neither Nancy nor her always-willing-to-give-it-a-try family members were "wowed" but this cake. Nancy prefers the "tighter crumb" of traditional pound cake, and liked the "classic financier" best of the four financier (or pseudo-financier) recipes she's tried.
Monica also tsk-tsked a bit about calling these "pound cakes" when they're made sans egg yolks. Her final conclusion: "They were good, not spectacular; I guess I was missing the rich, dense texture that a true pound cake gives you."
On the other hand, ButterYum found them "moist and addictive," as well as "delicious and very easy to put together."
And Raymond liked them so much ("pound cake, vanilla, butter! Are there any better or sweeter words in the English language?") that he barely complained about their baby size, although he did say that the next time he made them, he'd try using his mini-loaf pans, brought back from Paris. They are "mini" but not as mini as a financier pan.
Mendy made his ("the taste was very vanilla-y eand fantastic") in his brand new tiny silicone fluted pans--a thoughtful Hanukkah present from his wife.
Gartblue sounds like she'll be making them again. Not only were they buttery, she said but she also loved "the vanilla bean effect on them. Pretty and tasted heavenly. Another winner in my book"
(By the way, Gartblue's post was the first one I read that pointed out that Rose had foresaw the curdling problem. I missed that little warning in the directions, so when I was making them, I thought, "This is weird--the batter is curdling. Hope that's okay." It was.)
Vicki also gave them high marks: "Topped with a dab of marscapone and apricot jam, these were delicious. Everyone very much enjoyed them and they go on the Make Again List."
Lois focused on their Q&E nature. How easy? "So easy that I've just whipped them up in the wee hours of the morning - before the sun is even up. If you can tackle a recipe before you're really awake, how hard can it be?"
Kristina also liked how easy they were. And how easy it was to write her blog post because she "refused to spend longer typing it up than [she] did making it."
Lola didn't make the pound cakes [yet}, because computer problems forced her to play catch up. She posted about last week's chocolate velvet fudge cake. Like everyone else, she liked it. And she also shared her "BTG" technique for baking, but not eating, whenever she pleases. "Buy-Taste-Gift."
The beauty of these little cakes is that they don't need much dressing up. They can be served as is or with a little fruit. But Maria, our FEATURED BAKER, showed that they also take well to getting dressed up. Maria put a single sour cherry atop the batter, and then carefully placed some green pistachio slivers around the cherry. Who would have thought these little financiers could double as Christmas cupcakes?
I warned you that I was going to load up the "Free Choice" weeks as we go into the final stretch. (I have only 16 cakes left!) You'll see from the "Next in the Oven" list that there's one scheduled for next week and another one on January 17, just a month later.
After the Free Choice week, the Cranberry Crown Cheesecake is up. It'll be a perfect winter dessert, whether or not you celebrate Christmas. You may notice that the cheesecake can be made with soft ladyfingers as a base. It can also be made with Savoiardi biscuits or angel food cake. YOU CAN BUY ANY THESE. You do not have to make the base unless you really, really want to.
And then, believe it or not, it will be 2011! We started this project in 2009. Holy crap.