Joy the Baker

Chocolate Orange Cream Cheese Pound Cake

March 17, 2012

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What comforts you these days?

My immediate comforts include pastel Easter candy, pizza from Delancey in Seattle, and hot coffee on hot coffee on hot coffee.  I’m also soothed by caramel colored bourbon from  small glass tea cups… that’s how ladies (and grandmothers) drink their bourbon.  Why are all of my comforts food related?

I’m also comforted by old episodes of Seinfeld (who doesn’t like cashmere!?), copious amounts of post-it notes, over-sized grey sweaters,  black leather wedge heels, and surprisingly…. I’ve been comforted by crowds of strangers.  Thank you, people.  I love you tremendous.

Chocolate and orange are also deep in my comfort brain sensors.  Pound cake as a vehicle is just supreme.

book tour

Hello, Portland!  You sure do know how to make a lady and her cookbook feel welcome!  Thank you for coming out in the rain.  Thank you for bringing me spoons to sign, lip stain to wear, and bright blue nail polish.  It’s like you know me… because you totally do.  You are true people.  Thank you for all your smiles and love.

Please find, in the back left of the above photograph, someone holding up a little red baby.  Sweet Jesus… I love you.

book tour

HeyHey Seattle, you look pretty in rain and grey… especially when you accent it with pink and turquoise.  I love a good crash of color.

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Chocolate and orange and chaos.  Too many plates.  Two cups of tea.  Orange bites, and thick sliced cake.

I like when dessert settings appear cacophonous, and tend toward the delicious!

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A chocolate and orange engagement.

These dark chocolate buttons go down easy.  Snack!

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Here’s an excellent trick!

Rub orange zest into granulated sugar.  This process releases the essential oils from the zest and makes the sugar mixture fragrant and orange tinted.  It’s a great way to infuse orange flavor into breads and cakes.

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This batter is thick and creamy.  It’s the cream cheese that’s beat into the butter.

It’s always the cream cheese.

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Orange scented and chocolate studded.

A good amount of this batter went into my belly raw.  Don’t be like me.

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Golden top.  Split and beautifully crusted.  I love the crust of this cake.  It has weight.  It’s intentional.

Don’t let this cake get to you.  It takes a good, long while to bake.  With a little rotating in the oven, and some testing with a skewer, the cake will be done in about an hour.  Don’t fret, a deep golden-crusted top is a win!

book tour

Ooooh Seattle, I love you!  I really do!  You’re hilarious and fashionable.  You’re obsessed with coconut flour, and you really really know how to bake.  Thank you Book Larder.  Thank you to everyone who made treats to share.  Thank you for your kindness, patience, and awesome cat stories.  Thank you for bringing me bourbon and doughnuts… it’s like you can see right into my soul… because those two things are always among my deepest desires.  You amaze me.

book tour

I’ve been spending a lot of time being comforted by this French Feasts.  It has misty qualities that lend its reader toward delicious daydreaming, soft eggs, and fresh bread.

book tour

I love this picture of Gail Simmons’ new book.  It makes me think of layers of plates, oysters and pearls, and three course dessert presentations.  Certainly not the everyday… but grand when it happens.

Chocolate Orange Pound Cake

makes one 9×5-inch loaf

Print this Recipe!

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

2 tablespoons orange zest

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

4 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup dark chocolate pieces

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees F.  Grease a 9×5-inch baking pan and dust with flour.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside.

On a clean cutting board or counter, place the granulated sugar.  Add the orange zest.  With a bench scraper or the back of the spoon, work the zest into the granulated sugar, creating a fragrant and orange flavored sugar.  Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together softened butter and cream cheese.  Stop the mixer occasionally to scrape down the bowl and make sure that the butter and cream cheese are evenly mixed.  Add the citrus zest to the butter and cream cheese mixture, and beat on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes.

Stop the mixer.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.  On medium speed, beat in one egg at a time, beating for one minute after each addition.  Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary.  Beat in vanilla extract.

Add dry ingredients all at once.  Beat on low speed until dry ingredients are completely incorporated.  Fold in the chocolate pieces.

Spoon batter into prepared pan.  Bake for 50-60 minutes, rotating once or twice during baking.  Bake until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, or with just a few crumbs.

*Some readers are finding that the cake takes up to 75 minutes to fully cook.  You might consider loosely placing a foil tent over the cake after about 45 minutes of baking.  This will keep it from browning too much, and help the center bake up.

Cake will last, well wrapped at room temperature, for up to four days.  


155 Comments Add A Comment

  • Joy it looks like you are having an amazing time! And p.s. love the little red baby :)

    Orange and chocolate- mmmm fantastic combination. You are a smart lady.

  • OOOOO. KKKKKKK.

    That pound cake looks so wonderful-my mouth is watering! Your photos are really terrific, too.

    I am definitely going to try this (right after Easter, b/c the hubs and I gave up desserts for Lent!)

  • I wish I could be in Seattle to see you! But I’ll settle for a slice of pound cake. This cake looks wonderful – I love, love, love chocolate and orange together. Yum!

  • Man…I am so jealous of all the people that get to see you…Greer. But this pound cake looks so delicious! I didn’t know about that thing about the orange zest, I’m definitelymgoing to try it some time :)

  • oh joy!
    this looks glorious!
    i have to make this soon very very soon , how much chocolate goes in this?

  • Great recipe….you just make baking such a joy, oh my, that’s your name!

  • I was just explaining to my boyfriend yesterday why I love oranges and chocolate, but am not usually enticed by them together. This looks like I will eat my words though. Can’t wait!

  • I may just be dense- but I don’t see how much chocolate you put in. Of course, if you don’t tell me, you might help me resist making this tomorrow!

  • Orange zest and chocolate chips are absolute favorite combinations of mine in baked treats. I live in eastern Washington and am 4 hours away from Portland and 4 hours away from Seattle. I am so so sad that I didn’t get the chance to meet you. :(

  • Oh, can’t wait to try this with the white cheese I can get here! It almost always makes an interesting (and slightly fluffier) sub for cream cheese.

  • I’m sure that if you dislike the crust, you could cover the top with aluminum foil for the last 20 or so minutes of baking. Jus’ saying.

  • OK…you got me! I read this post and immediately got up and made the cake. It is in the oven right now. If the cake tastes anywhere as good as the batter did, I’m in deep trouble! Chocolate and orange are my absolute favorite flavors…together or alone. This made a beautiful, fluffy batter that just is gorgeous! I think I have a new favorite recipe.

  • Today’s post made me smile because I made your cream cheese pound cake (from your book) just this morning….and you are right…it is carazy moist!!! Thanks!

  • That is a great tip about rubbing zest into the sugar! Also, your book tour sounds like a blast. :)

  • Joy, I know because you were so rapturous over Seattle and all that you just left out that one lil’ chocolate ingredient! But how about this idea? I found cream cheese that is CHOCOLATE flavored – both dark and white – OMG! So I substituted it for the plain cream cheese and for those hard-core chocolate lovers, I threw in a few mini-morsels. Delish! Thanks for the recipe, because I love chocolate and orange together. Oh, and to be really wicked, mix some grand marnier (1 tbl) to some powdered sugar and do a teensy little drizzle on top of warm cake. Yum… ;-))

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