Happy Memorial Day friends! I hate to go on a rant here, but it really ticks me off when people act as if Memorial Day is national "hang out with your friends and bbq" day. I sent Ryan to the store to pick up a few things for this pound cake, and when he came back he was all flustered because he waited 20 minutes in line due to the "idiotic" cashier he encountered. And yes, idiotic is a direct quote. Basically, this cashier was a young girl whining to every customer in line about how she didn't get Memorial weekend off and how she can't hang out with her friends at the beach. Oh, I'm sorry, I guess we all forgot the part when you fought for your country. Or, all the time you spent dedicated in the service. Here is an idea...shut your mouth and scan the groceries :)
It is really sad how many people could care less about the true meaning of this holiday. I come from a family composed of many veterans - some who have fought in wars, and some who have not. Regardless, they all are extremely proud of the fact that they have served their country and lost many friends in the process of doing so. My father lost over a hundred of his 101st Airborne division friends in a plane crash, back in the 80's. One of these friends was his best friend from childhood, and to this day, he still gets sad when talking about it. My father was supposed to be on that plane, but was granted permission to stay home because my mother's due date to have me was so close to their departure. He is blessed to be on this earth today, and he never hesitates to thank those that have sacrificed for this great nation.
I think this is a large reason why my father has raised me to have such respect for veterans. It doesn't matter where we are, or how much time we have - if my father sees a veteran, he will stop, shake their hand and thank them for their service. This is something I have always admired about my father, and because of that, I now do the same. Many of these veterans, especially the older ones never received the appreciation they so rightfully deserved. I really feel that thanking them is the least we can do as a nation. Freedom isn't free, and we are blessed to live our lives the way we desire thanks to those brave enough to serve this country. Make every day Memorial Day. Do your part to let our veterans know they are appreciated and respected.
So...who likes pound cake?!
Let me start by saying that I am shocked that I decided to make something without chocolate. It has been a very long time since I went chocolate-less in anything I've baked. I am a choco-holic and proud! If you don't like chocolate, let me suggest that you re-evaluate your life.
My students drove me to the point of insanity this week, so the fact that I didn't eat my weight in chocolate is a miracle in itself. If I heard "Miss Poehl....(insert tattle-tale comment here)" one more time this week, my head would have exploded. Due to my misfortune, my school's secretary was sweet enough to share this recipe with me. It has a syrup that soaks into the cake and keeps it amazingly moist. I really haven't had a pound cake this moist, ever. And the glaze on the top is a must! You know me, the sweeter I can get something, the better.
I opted to make mini pound cakes using a muffin pan (big mistake). It worked just fine, but I increased my work load by about a hundred in doing so. You can make this cake in a loaf or bundt pan just as easily. Mine aren't the prettiest looking little things, but they are ridiculous tasty. Pound cake is self explanatory - prepare to gain pounds while eating this. However, also prepare for the "Hallelujah" song to play within seconds of the first bite. Yes, it is that good. Just wait, you will hear it.
7up Pound Cake
2 sticks butter
1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
3 cups sugar
1 teaspoon lemon extract
3 cups all purpose flour
1 large bottle 7up
Pre heat oven to 300 degrees.
Grease and flour loaf or bundt cake pan. Cream butter and shortening with sugar. Add eggs, one at a time - beating well after each addition. Add lemon extract. Add flour and 7up alternately, beating after each addition.
Bake cake for 1 hour and 15 minutes (25 minutes for muffin pan).
Let cake cool for 10 minutes, poke holes throughout the top of cake with baking sticks or rods (you can also use straws for this). Drizzle syrup over cake, allowing it to absorb into cake. Syrup recipe is as follows:
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup 7up
Heat ingredients in sauce pan over medium heat. Stir until mixture thickens (about 10 minutes). Spoon syrup over cake, once holes have been poked using baking sticks or rods.
After cake cools, drizzle glaze over the top. Glaze recipe is as follows:
2 cups confectioners sugar
2 tablespoons 7up (more or less depending on texture desired)
Add 7up to confectioners sugar and whisk. (I added 7up little by little, until I reached my desired glaze consistency). I like my glaze more on the thick side.