Monday, July 15, 2013

Happiness is...baking

I ran across this article in The Atlantic several weeks ago and I loved the premise.  The author talked about how happiness changes for us as we grow older. What would our younger selves think of what  currently brings us enjoyment?

Isn't that a great question.  But, to answer it, you have to know what makes you happy.  What makes you happy?  This is a much tougher question to answer. I find that I make progress when I think about the little things that contribute to my happiness, over searching for one big secret to happiness.  This is especially helpful lately when I have been working really hard to sustain my happiness.

A revelation.  I am happy when I am cooking and baking in my kitchen, even if it means that I do dishes six times in one day.  Last Sunday, I needed to clear my head and blueberry lime cream cheese pound cake sounded like the perfect cure.  A friend pinned it on Pinterest and I luckily had all of the ingredients.  The result was a delicious cake that lasted about 24 hours in our house.  Wonderful and easy to make!

Recipe from: 

Blueberry Lime Cream Cheese Pound Cake


1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons lime zest
1 cup fresh blueberries

Cream cheese frosting

4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9 x 5 loaf pan. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper and butter the parchment paper as well. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  3. In stand mixer, beat together cream cheese, butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, throughly mixing each time. Add vanilla extract and lime zest, mixing until combined.
  4. Pour flour mixture over the batter mixture. Using a large rubber spatula, gently fold in the flour until it’s completely mixed in and there are no pockets of dry flour. Lastly, gently fold in the blueberries.
  5. Transfer batter to prepared baking loaf pan. Bake for 55-65 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let sit until cool, at least 30 minutes and then remove from pan.
  6. In a stand mixer or large bowl, cream butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add confectioners' sugar and beat on low speed until combined, then on high until frosting is smooth. Beat in vanilla extract.
  7. Carefully frost top of the cooled poundcake and store in fridge until ready to serve.

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