Pound cakes are a great way to make use of any leftover baking ingredients. The cake gained its name, rather famously, from how it is made. A pound of each ingredient: the flour, the eggs, the butter, and the sugar.
This is also a very simple and efficient method for making a quick cake that can then be lathered in toppings or made with fruit or chocolate chips mixed in.
However, even though a pound cake is very easy to make, it is also very easy to mess the recipe up. Things can go wrong. Your cake might come out too dry, too flat, or completely burnt throughout! There are certain things you can do to prevent these errors, though.
Sadly, many people who endeavor to make pound cakes of their own soon find that the tops of their cakes have begun to crack, or have otherwise proven dry and unappetizing.
What can be done in such a situation? What causes it? And what can be done to prevent it in the future? Let’s make the perfect pound cake, by finding out what causes a cracked top, and how you can prevent it.
Why Does My Poundcaked Crack On Top?
This will generally happen when you have an imbalance in ingredients when making your cake. It happens when your cake batter is dense, which is caused by there being too much liquid or too much sugar in the mix.
These cracks appear because the outer area of the pound cake will be the first to cook, as it will be the first part to end up in contact with the hot air of the oven.
However, it should be noted that cracking on the top of a pound cake is very natural, and will happen in most cases when you make a pound cake. It’s merely just a thin layer of the cake that has been exposed to the oven longer and has thus become quite crispy.
The crispy texture, combined with the sweet taste of the cake can be quite pleasurable in and of itself, so don’t throw away a cracked pound cake!
What Can You Do If the Top of Your Pound Cake Cracks?
If the top of your pound cake is cracked, and you want it to have a smooth appearance, then you can choose to simply lightly slice off any of the crispy or burnt patches, until only the smooth and spongy cake underneath is left.
You can also make use of the cracked tops, by lightly slicing them off, and then repurposing them, such as scattering them over the top of some frosting on top of the pound cake.
Just remember that cracking is totally natural, and is largely meant to happen.
How Do You Prevent the Top of a Pound Cake from Cracking?
If you definitely want to ensure that your next pound cake doesn’t suffer from a cracked top, there are some things you can do to help it cook more evenly.
First, you could try playing around with the heat settings of your oven. Your oven may be slightly too hot, which is causing the top of your pound cake to crack to an intense degree.
Next time you make a pound cake, try setting the oven to a temperature slightly lower than last time, to see if it has a positive impact.
Another thing you could try is to change the pan that you are baking the pound cake in. Instead of using your standard baking pan, try using one of a different size or shape. Try grabbing a larger pan, as this will allow the heat to be distributed more evenly to the rest of the cake.
However, the case may be that you actually need a smaller pan, as your batter was too spread out. Before you buy a new pan, you should consider whether your current pan is too big or too small.
Can You Put Leftover Pound Cake Into the Fridge?
Yes, you can place leftover pound cakes into your fridge. This is a great idea, as it allows for the cake’s lifespan to be extended so that you can enjoy it for much longer.
When placing pound cake into the fridge, you should be sure to put it into a suitable container or wrap it tightly in plastic wrap.
This helps it to retain its taste, and it also protects the cake from accidentally absorbing the smells or flavors of other foods in the same fridge.
Wrapping up the cake also prevents it from drying out. Your cake could last in the fridge for up to a week before it ever begins to spoil, which gives you plenty of time to enjoy it!
Can You Put Leftover Pound Cake Into the Freezer?
Yes. You can very easily place your pound cake into the freezer at any point. Once in there, your pound cake could last in excess of 2 months, which is useful for those times when you’re just craving a little bit of cakey goodness.
You should try to use the cake within this 2 month period, while it is still at its best. Even though freezing helps food to last a lot longer, that food can still decay eventually.
To Finish Up
Pound cakes crack on the top as a result of the oven baking process. When a pound cake cooks in the oven it is the very outer layer that gets in contact with the heat first.
This means that once the whole cake has finished baking, the top layer will have been in contact with the heat slightly longer, and thus will become rather crispy.
However, you should keep in mind that a cracked pound cake top is not a sign of a great failure, and it instead is a very natural part of making a pound cake!
The cracked top still tastes very delicious, and won’t ruin the experience of the rest of the cake. They are meant to be celebrated, rather than feared!
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Secret To A Moist Pound Cake?
If you want your next pound cake to come out a little more moist and spongy, there are some extra ingredients you can add.
You should generally add different dairy ingredients. Try things such as cream cheese, sour cream, or buttermilk, which help to give the cake a very moist texture that makes it simply melt away in your mouth.
Sour cream and cream cheese can also slightly change the flavor of a cake, though this can be pleasurable in itself!
How Long Should Pound Cake Cool Before Cutting?
Once you have finished baking your fresh pound cake, you should be sure to give it time to rest and cool down for around 10 minutes at room temperature before you eat it or attempt to decorate it with icing. This allows the sponge to firm up slightly, to give it a better mouthfeel.
How Do You Know When A Pound Cake Is Done?
You’ll be able to tell if your pound cake is done by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake.
Pull out the toothpick, and check to see if it comes out clean. If the toothpick comes out with cake batter still sticking to it, then the cake is not yet done and needs a little bit more time.