The Pound Cake Project

Pound cake is one of the most common of the butter cakes in the Western world; we all know what pound cake is.  Or do we?  This short project for an US Food History course at Florida International University in Miami, Florida, will look at four five different recipes for pound cake from three four different centuries to show you that what you may think is pound cake is not really pound cake at all!

The purpose of this project is to look at change over time in four different aspects surrounding pound cake:

1. The recipe itself.  I will be analyzing its format, omissions and inclusions (such as instructions) and how they reflect contemporary society.

2. The ingredients.

3. The preparation

4. Last but certainly not least, the product itself.  I will compare the textures, flavor and other physical characteristics.

My goal is to trace the evolution of pound cake into what we know today as pound cake and how those changes parallel cultural, technological and economic changes in American society since the 18th century.

The posts:

Part 1, Pound cake from American Cookery by Amelia Simmons.  1796

Part 2, Pound cake from The Virginia Housewife, or Methodical Cook, by Mary Randolph. 1824

Part 3, Pound cake from Mrs. Rorer’s Cook Book, by Mrs. Roger.  1886.

Part 4, Pound cake from The Perfect Hostess Cook Book, by Mildred O’Knopf. 1950.

Part 5, Pound cake from The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook. 2006.


2 Responses

  1. Dan Macey says:

    Did you ever do this project? do you have the outcome? our group, the historic foodways society of the Delaware Valley (Philadelphia) would love to her the results. Thanks Dan….

    • Juneisy says:

      Hello, Dan. Yes, I did complete this project. There are links to all the posts right here on this page.

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