Pound cake

Sheer elegance: Spring brings new ingredients to the table bursting with flavor and vivid colors, such as fresh berries that make a perfect topping for a perfect pound cake. (Tom Wallas/Minneapolis Star Tribune/MCT)

Servings will vary

Note: To free up space in the oven, try cooking the ham in a slow cooker if it's more than a few slices. (A 5-quart slow cooker can hold up to a 10-pound ham. Do not let the ham touch the top of the cooker; cut the ham to fit the cooker, if necessary). Or if it's only a few slices of ham that you need, cook on top of the stove in a skillet. You won't need to add any water to the slow cooker because ham contains a significant amount of water.

Brown sugar (for an 8 lb. ham, about 2 cups)
Ham (chunk or slices)

In a slow cooker or skillet, sprinkle half the brown sugar. Place ham, flat side down, on sugar and sprinkle remaining brown sugar on top.

In a slow cooker, heat on low for 6 to 8 hours, or on high for about 3 hours. In a skillet, cook until meat is thoroughly heated through and sugar has melted and caramelized on meat.

Sour cream pound cake

Serves 12

Note: The cake can be made ahead and refrigerated or frozen. If you only have a smaller pan (9 inches instead of 10), use the excess batter to make cupcakes.

1 1/2 c. flour, plus more for dusting pan
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
8 oz. (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
2 c. sugar
3 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
Finely grated zest from 2 lemons
4 eggs, room temperature