Combine all dry ingredients and sift until finely incorporated. Separately, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and mix. Add any flavoring extract and salt if desired. Add the dry ingredients in three separate additions alternating with two additions of buttermilk. Mix until well incorporated. Bake at 350F until darkened and soft. Test the batter to ensure it is fully baked.