I feel like this blog is aging slightly. It already has 170 posts under its belt, and is 3.5 years old! It’s really getting up there in blog years (which are measured very similarly to dog years), and I’m sad to say, it’s starting to show.
Not in the most obvious way – it’s still looking as young and fresh as ever (right?!). But when I think about what to post, I’m at a bit of a loss these days. Cookies? Been there. Ice cream? My winter coat has not even retired for the season. And we all know that tarts are sprawled all over this blog.
And then it hit me. This whole time while choosing and making recipes for this blog, I have never once devoted a single post that highlighted dessert’s most basic, most reliable flavor. It makes sense, really, growing up in a household that always considered vanilla to be optional. But I have learned from my past and have come to realize that vanilla is the backbone of, well, everything. And it deserves its own post!
It also didn’t hurt that my sister sent me this kind-of life changing vanilla powder from Hawaii. Let’s just call that inspiration. And just like that, my blog got a second wind! A vanilla face-lift of sorts.
Vanilla Bean Poundcake (with a Vanilla Bean Glaze) (adapted from here)
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup (200 grams) sugar
3 eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup whole milk, at room temperature
1 tbsp. vanilla bean paste, or 1 vanilla bean, with the seeds scraped out
1 1/2 cups (188 grams) all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla bean powder (can omit if don’t have)
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 tsp. vanilla bean powder (or vanilla extract)
pinch of salt
2-3 tbsp. milk
For cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally butter and flour a regular bundt pan. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until smooth and light, about 3 minutes. Mix in eggs, one at a time, beating well after the addition of each. In another bowl, sift together all of the dry ingredients of the cake. Alternate mixing in the dry ingredients with the milk, mixing well after each addition, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Stir in vanilla bean powder. Pour batter into pan. Rap pan against the counter a couple of times to settle. Bake for about 30 minutes until tester comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 15-20 minutes then invert onto wire rack to cool completely.
For glaze: mix together sugar, vanilla and salt. Add milk, one tablespoon at a time until a thick, but pourable glaze is formed. Add more milk, if necessary. Pour over cooled cake.