There were the huge, red California strawberries, and the smaller, sweeter Korean ones a few months ago, while they were in season. Lately, perhaps with Spring ending, all I ever found at the supermarkets were these punnets of sad looking strawberries. They were either pale and greenish red, or dark red and rotten. The kid always grabs some when we go grocery shopping, and 3 days ago, despite my telling him that the strawberries aren't great, I have no idea how I ended up with 2 punnets of it when I opened the bags at home.
As expected, he made a face and didn't want to have any more after tasting one. It took all of my will power not to tell him: "See... Mehmee knows best. I told you so!" (smug face). Maybe when he's older.
Those strawberries languished in my fridge for awhile, and did nothing but irritate me every time I got something out or put stuff in, but I couldn't bring myself to throw them away. So I did the next best thing. I used them in a cake. They were too sour to be eaten on their own, and too disfigured to be used as cake accents.
I chopped them up, cooked them, and had a wonderful filling which gave a tart sweetness to an otherwise ordinary pound cake.
Strawberry Swirl Cream Cheese Pound Cake
Adapted from Half Baked
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Baking Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Serves: 10 - 12
This cake is very dense and not for those who prefer light, fluffy cakes. It's a perfect accompaniment to a cup of tea or coffee.
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
- 3 cups caster sugar
- 1 pack (250g) cream cheese, room temperature
- 6 large eggs
- 3 cups flour
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 6 - 8 fresh strawberries, finely diced.
- ¼ cup caster sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 1 tbs cornstarch
1. Start off by making the strawberry filling. Finely dice strawberries and cook it over medium heat along with the sugar, cornstarch and water until the mixture thickens. Set aside to cool.
2. Preheat oven to 160 deg C. Grease and flour a bundt pan. If you are using a 9" loaf pan, half the ingredients required.
Beat butter and cream cheese till well combined. Gradually add sugar, and beat on high speed till it turns light and fluffy, about 5 minutes or more. Don't be in a rush and do a cursory mix - since this recipe doesn't use baking powder or soda, the cake needs the extra 'air' achieved through mixing in order to rise.
3. Add eggs, one at a time, and mix till well blended. Reduce the speed to low, and gradually add the flour until it has all been combined. Add the vanilla extract and salt, mixing on low speed until incorporated.
4. Pour about 2/3 of the cake batter into the pan, and top with the strawberry filling. Use a skewer or a chopstick to swirl filling.