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Today I’m very happy to publish the blog with improved and revamped aesthetics. I’ve had the same blog design for a few years now, and I’ve been wanting a fresh new look for a while, so this is a very proud moment as it has been in the works for a few months. The basic functionalities and structure are pretty much the same, and the Recipes, Restaurant, and Travel pages are more organized (and better-looking).
Right now I’m still not 100% done with re-categorizing all of the posts, so please bear with me for the next few weeks as I clean up the archives. If you’re trying to find something and having trouble with it, just shoot me an email (or a Facebook message, Twitter DM, a contact form, whatever you prefer) and I’ll hunt it down for you.
Ideally, I would like to celebrate a momentous occasion like this with cake, but admittedly I have been so busy lately that I haven’t had the time to bake, assemble, frost, and dedicate myself to an indulgent celebration cake. I did, however, cobble together an easy and delightful little treat: Mini Orange Pound Cakes with Orange Rum Syrup. It involves sour cream, orange marmalade, and rum, and it might just be the perfect weekend breakfast treat… or midnight snack.
These little cakes are dense and soft, thanks to the eggs and sour cream in the recipe. Each cake is perfumed with orange zest, and amped up by a sweet orange and rum syrup. (I thought about calling it a glaze, but it’s not thick enough, and it really is sweet like syrup.) It’s okay if you want to omit the rum (or the syrup altogether) but I urge you not to, because it takes these little cakes from yum to YUM! The alcohol taste is minimal, but it adds a certain warmth and spice to the cakes.
The recipe will make three little cakes in mini loaf pans (5×3 in) but I’ve also tried using an 8×8 square baking pan with success (you’ll just need to increase baking time by about 10-15 minutes). These mini pound cakes are the perfect size for gifting, and also for stashing in your fridge/freezer for guests. They taste great warm, but I do prefer them cold the next day, after the syrup has permeated the tops and each slice is brimming with bright orange flavor and the sweet warmth of rum.
In hindsight, these mini cakes are much better suited for the unveiling of my new blog redesign than an elaborate, multi-step layer cake. These mini loaves are more approachable, require simple ingredients, and aren’t too fussy (plus, rum is involved). Each slice is bright and sweet, and – if I am not mistaken that you guys and I have similar sensibilities – each little slice will make you smile and leave you wanting more.
Mini Orange Pound Cakes with Orange Rum Syrup
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 4 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups all purpose flour
Orange Rum Syrup
- juice of 1 orange
- 1/2 cup rum
- 2 tablespoons orange marmalade
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Butter and flour three mini loaf pans, set aside.
- Make the cakes. In a big mixing bowl, cream butter, sugar, and sour cream together until light and fluffy. Add eggs separately, beating thoroughly after each. Add vanilla, orange zest, and salt. Gradually add in flour, mixing just until incorporated. Be careful not to overmix.
- Pour into a loaf pans and bake for about 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center of cakes comes out clean. Let cool in pans for at least 15 minutes.
- Make the syrup. In a small sauce pan, combine all ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture slightly thickens, about 10 minutes.
- Using a toothpick, poke holes in pound cakes. Divide syrup equally into three and pour over tops. Pound cakes can be served immediately but I prefer chilling overnight (covered tightly with plastic wrap) and serving the next day.
I’m so happy with the blog’s new look – I like thinking that it’s evolving with me, so now it looks a little bit more polished but still feminine. I hope you guys like it, too! A giant thank you goes out to Lindsay of Purr Design, who listened to everything I wanted and more. She is super easy to work with and I highly recommend Purr for those of you looking to improve your blog. Let me know if you have any questions – about the blog, about pound cake, or about other recipes with rum.