Delicious desserts: Spice-glazed pound cake and more

If you're looking for an inexpensive and easy sweet treat to serve your guests this Halloween, why not whip together the perfect pound cake! Catherine DeOrio, the executive chef of Hillshire Brands, makes a turtle pound cake with salted caramel sauce and a classic pound cake spiced up with an orange glaze.

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  • For the cake:

    • 2 sticks of butter; softened and cut into tablespoon-sized cubes
    • 1 1/3 cups sugar
    • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
    • 3 large eggs, plus three egg yolks
    • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 1/2 teaspoon water
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • For glaze:

    • 1/4 cup confectioner
    • 3 to 4 tablespoons fresh squeezed orange juice
    • 1/2 teaspoon orange zest, plus additional for garnish
    • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/16 teaspoon ground cloves
    • Pinch kosher salt
    • Candied orange peel or wheels (optional)


Baking Directions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Prepare a 9 x 5-inch non-stick metal loaf pan by greasing the pan and then lining with parchment paper: One strip fitted lengthwise and one strip crosswise-pushed snugly into the corners of the pan.  Using a standing mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter until smooth on medium-high speed. While mixer is running, slowly add sugar and beat until light and fluffy, scraping down sides as necessary, approximately 3 to 5 minutes.In a small spouted bowl or measuring cup, mix together the eggs and yolks, water and vanilla extract. With mixer running, slowly add the egg liquid in a steady stream and then add in salt.  Do not over beat, stop once fully incorporated.Remove bowl from mixer and sift flour over batter, ½ cup at a time, and gently fold it in until fully incorporated. Repeat with remaining flour. Pour batter into prepared baking loaf pan, smoothing the top. Bake for 60 to 75 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Remove from oven and let cake rest a few minutes before inverting it onto a cooling rack. Cool completely before glazing.While cake is cooling, make glaze. In a small bowl, whisk together sugar and juice until sugar is dissolved. Add zest and spices and whisk to combine. (Note: for a thicker glaze, add more powdered sugar to reach desired consistency)Set cooling rack with cake over a waxed paper lined baking sheet. Using a toothpick, poke the pound cake several times, about an inch apart, until you have poked holes in the entire top of the pound cake.  Pour glaze evenly over cake, letting it run down sides. Garnish with candied orange peels or orange zest. Let set, approximately 10 to 15 minutes.

Turtle pound cake
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  • Turtle pound cake:

    • 1 1 lb pound cake; cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
    • 3/4 cup salted caramel sauce
    • 1/2 cup dark chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate; melted
    • 3/4 cup toasted pecans; chopped
  • For caramel sauce:

    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1/3 cup water
    • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon sea salt


Baking Directions:

For cake:Place 1 to 2 slices of pound cake on a plate and spoon caramel sauce on top. Sprinkle with pecans and drizzle with chocolate.  For salted caramel sauce:Stir together sugar and water in a medium heavy bottomed saucepan with a candy thermometer attached. Cook over low heat 5 to 10 minutes until the sugar has dissolved — do not stir. Use a wet pastry brush to down any sugar crystals that accumulate on the sides of pan while coking.Increase heat to medium, swirling caramel every once in awhile and cook until the sugar reaches 350 degrees. Once heat reaches 350 degrees turn off heat and whisk in cream and vanilla — this will splatter so be careful. Turn heat back on to low and stir until smooth. Whisk in salt in increments, tasting in between until it reaches desired taste. Cool and refrigerate.  Warm before serving.


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