Sunday, March 28, 2010

Buttermilk Avocado Pound Cake

I dropped the cake. I dropped my Buttermilk Avocado Pound Cake midway through it's baking cycle. I dropped the cake all over the oven, in the oven.

And here was my attempt to salvage the cake:

Sort of looks like a cheesy baked...something or other.

But alas, it is cake, not cheese. Sweet, not savory. Despite my clumsiness, the parts that I managed to salvage actually tasted quite, well, tasty. I had a grand time picking off all the browned spots (my favorite)! At least I had another loaf pan of cake that I did not drop. Fewf.

My clumsiness was like "heyday" for the dogs. The following series of photographs chronicles Penny the dog's happiness/determination regarding my dropping the cake/her trying to help me clean up the delicious green gooey mess (NOTE: I had cleaned up the mess hours before I took these photographs; apparently Penny could still taste the yumminess).

"What? I'm just casually lingering by the oven, looking all innocent"

"mmmm, oh yah, this is good"

"I've got to get into every crevice, who knows where some extra cake goup may be hiding"

"Searching, searching..."

"Got it!"

"This is my last lick, I swear"

"Ok really, I'm almost done. Lickity Split"

Finnegan the dog usually enjoys a steady diet of dirty, sweaty socks and tomato plants + their fertilized soil, but whenever I come visit, he is also thrilled to lick up my baking accidents.

So yes, cake. Buttermilk Avocado Pound Cake. Different. Strange. Wonderfully moist and one of the best cakes that I have eaten/made in a while. Plus, it's green! Helllllloooooo Spring!

Ever since I saw this cake posted on Joy's blog, I have been dying to make it! The combination of buttermilk and avocado is utter bliss. Joy notes how the avocado taste is " subtle but distinct with a nice sweetness and a hint of crunch from cornmeal." A home run, indeed, Joy.

My brother took a bite and he did a little jig, dancing around and saying mmmm this is gooooooood!

Oh, family, you are so fun to cook for!

I came home to visit the fam this past week, and the first thing my dad says to me is "what are you going to make for us this week, Stephanie?" Yesterday morning was my last morning in LA and, mind you, as we are both chowing down on our a.m. cereal, my dad says, "Stephanie, are you going to make me anything special for breakfast before you go?" Goodness, I'm a sucker for him; what a good eater.

This cake was one of many hot hits this week. I can definitely see it served at a nice restaurant paired with creme fraiche ice cream and candied kumquats. Oh, or an olive oil whipped cream! But really, this cake is perfect on its own. Really, perfect.

Just try not to drop it like I did.

Buttermilk Avocado Pound Cake

recipe found on

makes 2 9x4x3-inch loaves

3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup yellow cornmeal

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened

3 cups sugar

4 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (I used my own homemade extract!)

3/4 cup buttermilk

flesh of 1 1/2 ripe avocados, just over a cup of avocado, mashed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two loaf pans and set aside.

In a medium sized bowl, sift together flour, cornmeal, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Set aside. Set the four eggs out on the counter to come to room temperature while you beat the butter and sugar.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter on medium speed until softened and pliable. Add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the avocado and beat another minute to incorporate. Scrape down the sides of the bowl to ensure that everything is thoroughly mixed.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating 1 minute after the addition of each egg. Beat in vanilla extract.

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add half of the flour mixture, all of the buttermilk, and then the rest of the flour mixture. Beat just until combined.

Divide the dough between the two loaf pans and place in the oven. Turn the oven down to 325 degrees F. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean (Here is where I messed up. I wanted to rotate my cakes halfway through baking, and plop, I missed a beat and it fell EVERYWHERE. Go Steph). Check the cakes every ten minutes or so after the 30 minute mark. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

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