More and more, it’s proven to me that the grill improves almost everything, from bread to veggies to dessert. Pound cake is no exception!
Part of the reason I was playing with desserts on the grill is that I received a “sample” of different Four Roses bourbons and wanted to use one in a dessert. Little did I realize that I was getting 750ml samples of three of the distillery’s offerings! In full disclosure, I received these to try at no cost to me. Any opinion of the whiskeys is completely mine, unbiased by the fact that the product was supplied for my use.
With that said, back to the dessert!
Pound cake is easy to make, but there’s a local grocery that makes an excellent pound cake, so I opted for the easy route of buying that. I also picked up some ripe blackberries, and, since I wasn’t in the mood to make custard, got a pint of pastry cream/custard from the bakery, too. So far, things are simple… Luckily, they stay that way.
To make Livefire Drunken Pound Cake, the blackberries (other locally sourced, in-season berries can be substituted) are macerated in equal parts of Maguey Sweet Sap and bourbon. I used Four Roses Yellow, a blended bourbon that’s very drinkable as a mixer, but not really a great sipper. It’s proving to work really well in cooking, too!
Macerating berries sounds fancy, but it simply means softening or breaking up in a liquid. Using a wooden spoon or masher, the berries just get mashed/broken up while heating them in the liquid, then simmering the berries and liquid for 15-20 minutes.
While the berries, sap and booze are simmering, slices of pound cake get grilled. Do this on a really clean grate, and use just a touch of butter to ensure good contact with the grate. The slices should be put on the grate at a 45 degree angle to mark them, then turned 90 degrees to make crosshatch marks. Flip and repeat. Again… simple!
Plating is a slice of grilled pound cake with a dollop of pastry cream, topped with a liberal amount of the berries, sweet sap and bourbon. Don’t tell anyone that you purchased the pastry cream and pound cake… Just let them enjoy. They’ll think you’re a grilling superhero! The cape is optional.
- 8 1" slices of pound cake, buttered lightly on both sides
- 1 pint pastry cream
- 1½ pints fresh berries (cleaned)
- 3 ounces Four Roses Yellow bourbon
- 3 ounces Maguey Sweet Sap (or light molasses)
- Preheat the grill to high heat.
- Put the Maguey Sweet Sap and Four Roses Yellow bourbon in a sauce pan and heat until the mixture bubbles, then turn down to a simmer. Add the berries, and lightly mash/break them up while continuing to simmer. Continue simmering for 15-20 minutes.
- While the berries simmer, place the pound cake slices on the grill at a 45 degree angle for 2-3 minutes (check to ensure the pound cake doesn't burn). Turn 90 degrees and grill for the same amount of time. Flip the slices, and do the same, creating crosshatch marks on each side of the slices.
- Remove the pound cake slices from the grill and place the slices on plates, adding a dollop of pastry cream. Top with a large spoonful of the berries, Maguey Sweet Sap and Four Roses bourbon mixture.
- Serve immediately.