Eggnog Pound Cake with Crystal Rum Glaze

This inviting holiday cake is the next best thing to eggnog in a cup. The dense yet tender cake showcases the incomparable flavor of eggnog, while rum, nutmeg, and currants add a complementary dimension. Bake it in your favorite patterned Bundt pan, and brush the warm cake with the rum glaze. As the cake cools, the crystallized topping clings attractively to the crevices, creating a special effect.–Flo Braker

LC Melts In Your Pan, Not In Your Hands Note

This tender cake is the next best thing to a cup of eggnog, flaunting those familiar flavors of rum and nutmeg.

Eggnog Pound Cake with Crystal Rum Glaze Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 45 M
  • 2 H
  • Serves 20

Ingredients

  • For the pound cake
  • Scant 1/2 cup (2 1/4 ounces) currants
  • 2 tablespoons dark rum or water, at room temperature
  • 3 cups (13 3/4 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more for the pan
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, preferably freshly grated
  • 8 ounces unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the pan
  • 2 cups (14 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup (8 fluid ounces) refrigerated eggnog, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For the crystal rum glaze
  • 3/4 cup (5 1/4 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons dark rum
  • 2 tablespoons water

Directions

  • Make the pound cake
  • 1. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) or, if the pan has a dark finish, 325°F (160°C). Butter a 10-by-3-inch Bundt pan or a 10-by-4 1/4-inch tube pan (with or without a removable bottom) and then flour it, tapping out any excess flour. (If your pan has an intricate design or detail, I take extra precaution, spreading it first with solid vegetable shortening, followed by a coating of nonstick spray, and then a dusting of flour to ensure the finished cake releases in one piece.)
  • 2. In a small bowl, combine the currants and rum. Let soak for 15 minutes.
  • 3. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg.
  • 4. Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-low speed until creamy and smooth, 30 to 45 seconds. Add the sugar in a steady stream and continue to beat on medium speed until light in color and fluffy, about 5 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the mixer still on medium speed, add the eggs, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, beating after each addition until incorporated and stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. On the lowest speed, add the flour mixture in 4 additions alternately with the eggnog in 3 additions, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and mixing after each addition just until incorporated. Stop the mixer as needed to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the vanilla and mix just until combined. Detach the paddle and bowl from the mixer, and tap the paddle against the side of the bowl to free the excess batter. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the currants and any remaining rum. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly with the spatula.
  • 5. Bake the cake just until the top springs back when lightly touched in the center and the sides are beginning to come away from the pan, 55 to 65 minutes. Transfer the cake to a wire rack and let it cool in the pan for about 10 minutes while you prepare the glaze.
  • Make the crystal rum glaze and glaze the cake
  • 6. In a small bowl, combine the sugar, rum, and water and stir with a rubber spatula just until blended.
  • 7. Tilt and rotate the cake pan while gently tapping it on a counter to help release the cake. Invert a wire rack on top of the pan, invert the cake onto the rack, and carefully remove the pan. Slide a sheet of waxed paper under the rack.
  • 8. Using a pastry brush, coat the top and sides of the warm cake with the glaze, using every last drop. Let the cake cool completely before serving. To serve, slide the base of a tart pan, a small rimless baking sheet, or a large offset spatula under the cake and carefully transfer it to a serving platter. Thinly slice the cake with a sharp or serrated knife.
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Comments
Comments
  1. Lorrie says:

    I’d love to make this for when my son comes up this Christmas as he loves eggnog. I prefer golden raisins to currants. Would that be an appropriate substitution?

    • David Leite says:

      Hi Lorrie,

      I think that golden raisins would be a fine substitution for the currants in this recipe. I would use the same measurement (1/2 cup) and macerate as Flo instructs. Let us know how you like the substitution!

      • Tiny Banquet says:

        I’m making this again this year and really looking forward to having a slice. My home-made vanilla extract isn’t ready yet so I’ll use a bean. I’m OK with the flecks.

        • Beth Price, LC Director of Recipe Testing says:

          Hi Tiny Banquet, I actually love to see the flecks. Let us know how it works out!

  2. Mareesa says:

    Would it be okay to delete the currants from recipe? How would that effect the taste?

    • David Leite says:

      Hi Mareesa,

      Leaving currants and/or raisins out of the recipe is acceptable and would certainly work but you’ll be losing a dimension of texture and flavor. You might consider substituting chopped walnuts. In the end the important thing is that it suits your taste so take creative license and enjoy!

  3. Tiny Banquet says:

    Delicious, delicious, delicious. I made this for Christmas 2008, and it’s good enough to become a tradition. The cake was moist and delicious, with a very nice, very slight crunch from the glaze. I used homemade non-alcoholic eggnog in place of store-bought: 1 egg, approx. 1/4 cup heavy cream, just under 3/4 cup milk (i.e., enough to bring the measure up to 1 cup), and a generous amount of fresh-grated nutmeg. I used golden raisins in place of the currants and soaked them in dark rum as directed. Part of the cake stuck to the pan even though I had buttered and floured it, but I rearranged the broken piece as best I could and once the glaze set it wasn’t very noticeable. The cake tasted just as good the next day, too.

    • David Leite says:

      Bundt cake pans can be temperamental. When I think that I’ve prepped one with just the right amount of butter, I add a skosh more. Good thing you have some architectural skills. I’m glad you enjoyed the cake.

  4. jackie says:

    This is really a delicious cake! Not too sweet and a lovely texture. I ran out of regular sugar so used Sugar in the Raw for the topping. The crystal sugar looked beatiful on top of the cake. This will definitely be a holiday staple.

    • Beth Price, LC Director of Recipe Testing says:

      Hi Jackie,

      So glad that you enjoyed the cake. I imagine that the Sugar in the Raw would be a beautiful topping. Isn’t it nice to have a trusty “go to ” recipe for your holiday treats?

      Best wishes

  5. LaShanta says:

    I made this cake for my office Christmas party. I found that 55 minutes wasn’t near enough time for the cake to finish cooking. When I took it out at 55 minutes, there was lots of wet batter still on my tester knife that I stuck into the cake. I added 15 minutes to the cooking time and that pretty much finished it up. (It was still a bit moist in the center but it was edible.)

    Another thing that happened was that it fell when I took it out of the oven. It had puffed up pretty high in my angel food tube pan. But when I took it out, the center part near the ring fell in a lot. Did that happen to anyone else? Again, the flavor was pretty good, but it was much more dense and heavy than I had anticipated. I wish it had been a bit fluffier. Will adding an additional egg help with that problem?

    • David Leite says:

      LaShanta, thanks for writing. If you look at the recipe, Flo states, “55 to 65 minutes” is required for proper baking. You baked yours for 70 minutes. There can be a few reasons why the cake may have needed the little extra to bake.

      I think the biggest culprit could be your oven. It sounds like it’s running cool or has cool spots. I’d buy two or three oven thermometers and place them around the oven. Crank it to the heat you need and see if the three thermometers register correctly. If they are pretty much all off, the oven has to be calibrated, and a local repairperson can do that. If only one of the thermometers is off, you have a cold spot, and you’ll need to rotate your cake several times while baking.

      Opening the oven door is a disaster for a cake. You should open the oven door for the first time at the lower end of a time suggestion. So in this case, open the oven for the first time at around 55 minutes—that’s when you should turn the cake, if you have a cold spot.

      Regarding the cake falling, it could be due to several things such as: 1. low oven temperature, 2.) under baking, or 3.) excessive jarring of the cake. My guess is it’s a combo of the first two.

      As far as adding an extra egg, that would throw off the critical balance of ingredients. Flo Braker is one of the most respected bakers and cookbook writers in America because she’s rigorous in her testing of recipes—so I’d trust the recipe. I think if you follow some of suggestions above, you have one heck of a cake. Happy baking!

  6. Marjie Lischer says:

    I always use a good amount of butter flavored Crisco and grease every crevice of my Bundt pan. Then dust the whole inside of the Bundt pan with a good amount of powdered sugar rather than flour. So far none of my Bundt cakes stick

    • Beth Price, LC Director of Recipe Testing says:

      Hi Marjie,
      What wonderful advice! I’m going to try that trick on my next rum cake. I bet that little bit of extra sugar doesn’t hurt either.

  7. Danuta Gajewski says:

    Hello! I discovered your site when I did a search for eggnog cake (with Christmas over, I had a litre of eggnog, unopened, sitting in my fridge!). Oh my goodness! This was absolute heaven!! An easy-to-follow recipe with no-muss, no-fuss ingredients (thanks to a husband and guests who don’t like eggnog!). My only change was using dried cranberries instead of currants. And when I make it again, I will double the quantity of cranberries. I decided to follow Marjie’s recommendation to dust the pan with icing sugar rather than flour—a great suggestion and one that I will do from now on with all of my bundt pan cakes as the icing sugar absorbed into the cake and didn’t leave a “white ghost” effect on the cake sides. I will switch back to my old standby icing, lemon, and icing sugar mixture for the next cake, though, as the sugar and rum coating overpowered the beautiful, rich, velvety taste of the cake. This recipe is a keeper. Even my eggnog-hating husband agreed! It reminds me of my mother’s and grandmother’s babka piaskowa recipes (“sand” babkas) when I was growing up! Thank you so much for posting this recipe. I’m at a loss as to what to try next—the recipes on this site all looks so fabulous!

    • Renee Schettler Rossi says:

      Danuta, this is the best kind of comment we could possibly receive, seeing as it speaks directly to the reason why we do what we do. It’s all about memorable recipes—and, as you said, recipes we remember along with all the attendant emotions that come flooding back upon that first taste. We’re so happy you liked this recipe and can’t wait to hear which one you choose to make next….

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