Friday, April 18, 2014

Orange chocolate chip pound cake

One of the best holiday cookies I've had was an orange shortbread dipped in dark chocolate. Which is why, I suppose, it wasn't a stretch to add chocolate chips and orange zest to a pound cake.

I made three pound cakes last weekend, and this was the experimental one. I followed, more or less, the Lemon Poundcake recipe I've posted before, but did variations on the theme with lemon, lime and orange.

The process of doing three at once meant lots of zesting, measuring, sugaring and flouring at once. The kitchen went into processing mode pretty quickly.

The egg and butter levels in the counter area were staggering. There were also small bowls of freshly squeezed juice, waiting in the wings...

Then, finally, it was time to bake.

This goes together pretty quickly. It's the baking you have to allow time for. Normally, these cakes take about 90 minutes, and then need to cool for 20 to 30 minutes. The good news is, they freeze beautifully and thaw overnight in the fridge. 

Orange chocolate chip pound cake

You'll need:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 t. baking powder
1/4 t. kosher salt
2 sticks salted butter
2 cups sugar
5 eggs
2 T. orange juice
1 T. orange zest
1 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

All you need to do:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter a 9 in. by 5 in. loaf pan, and line with wax paper. Butter the wax paper, also.

Whisk dry ingredients together in a smaller bowl and set aside. In a standing mixer, mix butter until creamy, about 2 min. Then add sugar and mix to combine. Pause and scrape the sides of the bowl. With the mixer on low, add the eggs one at a time. Then add the juice and zest.

With the mixer on low, add flour mixture 1/4 cup at a time. When all the flour is mixed in, stop the mixer. Stir in chips by hand.

Pour mixture into loaf pan, and bake at 325 degrees for 90 minutes, rotating halfway through. Let pan cool for about 20-30 minutes. De-pan to cool completely. Once cooled, wrap in plastic wrap, and store in a gallon-size ziptop bag. You can freeze this bread, well wrapped, for at least a week, and probably a month, I would guess.

If you like, mix powdered sugar with orange juice to create a glaze. Or, melt chocolate chips and a little canola oil in the microwave, then drizzle over cut slices of cake.

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