Pound Cake Wars, Gingersnaps and Easy Summer Desserts You Can’t Screw Up

Last week I told you about the absolutely amazing Sour Cream Pound Cake my sister made. I enjoyed it greatly. She hated it!

My sisters Sour Cream Pound Cake

She felt it was too heavy. I protested. “It’s a pound cake. They are supposed to be heavy.” She didn’t agree. She decided she would remake the cake with less flour.

“It’s not a pound cake if you use less flour,” I advised. “It’s just a cake.”

“Not true. I always tell you that you can make a recipe your own. I can make it my way,” she fought back. And with that a week long debate by phone and text ensued. By week’s end, I turned to my New York Times Cooking Facebook group to get feedback.

The premise I presented was simply this: Is a pound cake a pound cake if it’s not made with one pound of butter, one pound of eggs, one pound of sugar and one pound of flour? 82 responses later the answer is: No, Yes and just eat the cake who cares.

Those who said no often referred to old cookbooks and recipes dating back to the 1700’s. However there was one particular commenter who gave the best explanation for why it’s not a pound cake if you don’t follow the prescribed recipe.

Pound cake first came about during the early 1700s in Britain. At that time, the average person was unable to read or write, so recipes that could easily be spread by word of mouth tended to be the most popular. Pound cake also called for simple ingredients that most households could afford, a factor that remains a part of its popularity. The oldest recipes for pound cake call for a pound each of sugar, eggs, butter and flour; two variations of these types of pound cakes can be found in Amelia Simmons’ famous 1796 book, American Cookery. Given that one pound of ingredients was called for in those recipes, a true pound cake would weigh about four pounds total.

A New York Times Cooking FB group member
My slice of pound cake with powdered sugar!

For those who agreed with my sister, they shared comments like

Sister is correct. Unless maybe you’re in a pound cake competition put on by Pedants Assoc of America.

And others simply had fun with their answers

I would have to eat the whole cake…I mean taste it first in order to issue a verdict!

At the end of the day, it’s clear that what’s called pound cake today more than likely deviates from the original recipe. And I can accept that.

As for my sisters second cake with less flour, it was not delicious at all. She should’ve stuck with the original recipe. Now we all know to make the pound cake as prescribed.

Now one of the biggest holidays where pound cakes reign supreme is Juneteenth. Food, fun and freedoms is what this holiday about. Next week I’ll be providing a full guide to what foods and desserts to make to celebrate Juneteenth.

However this week I’m going to share with you super easy super delicious dessert recipes that won’t have you slaving away in the kitchen while everyone else is by the pool enjoying the sun.

The first recipe – a Gingersnap Peach Crumble from the cookbook Five Ingredient Recipes by food blogger Philia Kelnhofer aka SweetPhi – requires only three ingredients – ginger snaps, butter and peaches (canned or fresh – your choice).

Yummy ginger snap cookies and butter clusters

Place 20 to 25 ginger snaps in a food processor and pulse until they are crumbled. Add 4 tablespoons of cold butter to the cookies and pulse some more until they are mixed. Next, cut up 5 – 6 fresh peaches (or drain a 16 oz can of peaches) and pour the peaches into an 8×8 baking dish.

A mix of fresh and canned peaches

Spoon the cookie/butter mix over the peaches. Cool in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes.

Your house will smell so good when you bake this.

Viola you have an easy peasy Gingersnap Peach Crumble. Eat it plain or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Either way it is sure to be a hit.

Here are three more quick and easy recipes

The 3 Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookie by 365 Days of Baking

Easy No Bake Cheese Cake Bites by Fun Money Mom

Homemade Banana Pudding by Simply Lakota

These highly rated simple recipes will rock your family picnic! I promise!

Until next week, eat dessert first!

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