Fruity Plum Cake
My cakes over the years
Holly Jolly season has arrived and here is our best season of the year,Christmas.Plum Cake are cakes rich in fruits or nuts, specially baked during Christmas Season especially in Kerala..Its a big business for bakeries during that Jingle Bell Season.Last year i tried my own first plum cake and it came out awesome.If you spend some time even every body who have little patience and a baking oven can easily bake a plum cake and be a star of the family on this festive time.
Main ingredient of the plum cake is obviously Maida/all purpose flour and caramel syrup gives the rich Reddish brown color to the cake.Mostly bakeries use fruits(Tutti Fruti) or nuts(Cashews,almonds,walnuts) and raisins which are soaked in Rum for almost 1 month.So for us also the first step of this cake preparation is soaking of the dried fruits and nuts in alcohol..Last year i used red wine for soaking purpose.Rum is not a necessary ingredient.We can use wine as it is commonly used among us.Soak the dried fruits and nuts in Red wine for atleast 1 week..1-3 weeks is more better.But, by that time, it may cause fungal growth.So keep in fridge after soaking in wine.You can use any clean bottle with a tight lid.Just tilt the jar side ways once in 2 days.
1. For soaking the fruits n Nuts
1.Tutti fruiti - 1 cup
2. Raisins(kismiss) - 1/3 cup
3.Nuts( mix of skinless almonds,cashews,walnuts) - 1/3 cup
4.Cherries - 1/3 cup
5.Red wine/Rum - 1 cup
6.Sugar - 4 Tb sp
Fruits n Nuts soaked in Red wine
Do this as the first step for plum cake preparation....
Also Instead of soaking fruits,You can simply mix all nuts and dried fruits in wine or rum and boil it in medium flame.This is so easy and last year i tried this instead of soaking.
while boiling,nuts and fruits absorbs all those liquid and it gives more flavor and richness to the cake.
Spices, dry fruits and nuts are the high lighting ingredients for this fruity cake.
2.Ingredients For the cake
1.All purpose flour/Maida - 1.5 cups (Measure & Seive)
2.Butter (unsalted) or any veg oil - 3/4 cup [1.5 stick butter] keep in room temp, before use
3.Granulated sugar(make sugar powder in a mixie) - 1.5 cups
4.Eggs - 3 (separate it as yolk and white )keep in room temp before use.
5.Baking powder - 1 Tsp
6.Baking soda - 1/2 Tsp
7.Red wine (Grape) - 2 Tb sp
8.Vanilla extract - 1 Tsp
9.Orange/Lemon Zest(skin) grated - 1/2 Tsp
10.Salt - 1/2 pinch
3. Spice list(powdered) needed(Make a powder mix using these spices)
1.Nutmug - 1/4 Tsp
2.Cinnamon - 1/4 Tsp
3.Cloves - 1/4 Tsp
4.Cardamom - 1/4 tsp
5.Jeera/Cumin - 1/4 Tsp
1.Granulated(powdered) sugar - 1/2 cup
2.water - 1 Tb sp
2.warm Water - 1/4 cup water.
For caramalizing,add 1/2 cup powdered sugar in a pan.Reduce the flame and wait until the sugar melts.Add 1 Tb sp water.Don't burn sugar.When the sugar forms brown colour and melts completely add the 1/4 cup of warm water and remove from flame.Remember don't burn sugar.It makes bitter taste.
Method of Preparation
Pic 1 & 2 Sugar caramalizing
1.Caramalizing is the first step for this cake preparation.Caramalize sugar and keep it aside.
2. Then Mix all the dry ingredients(listed in set 2 )for the cake in a bowl.
Pic 3: Egg- butter mixture
3.In another bowl add the egg yolks and mix it properly with egg beater or hand mixer.Add the butter (Always use room temperature butter)to the beated egg yolk and beat again to form a smooth paste.Add the lemon or orange zest(grated skin),VANILLA ESSENCE to the egg yolk butter paste,mix it and keep aside.[This reduces the egg smell and gives pleasant citrus flavor].
Also,I have added powdered sugar to this egg yolk butter mix.(But this is optional).At this stage you can add the caramelized sugar syrup and well combined everything.
4.In another bowl,add the egg whites and beat using a hand mixer until it forms peeks.[This gives the smooth texture to the cake].
Pic 4: Egg white peaks
5.To the dry ingredients bowl,add all the powdered spices and mix properly with a plastic spatula or wooden spoon.
Pic 5: Flour + Spice mix + Baking powder + Baking soda
6.Add the egg white mixture into the egg yolk- butter paste and mix lightly with a spatula or wooden spoon.Then slowly add half of the dry powders into the egg butter mixture.Fold it using a wooden spoon or spatula.Fold the remaining powder as well. Don't mix it using a hand mixer[it forms more aeration to the cake).
Pic 6: Nuts coating in flour
7.Now its the time for adding nuts and fruits which were soaked in wine/rum weeks before.
8.Separate nuts,fruits mixture from wine using a strainer and add half of the nuts- fruit to the cake mix directly and coat the remaining nut - fruit mixture with all purpose flour/maida and then add to the cake mix.[This makes the evenly distribution of nuts- fruits mixture to the cake while baking].
Pic 7: cake Batter mix
9.Make a smooth cake batter with all ingredients using a wooden/plastic spoon.
10.Pre heat the oven at 350 deg F and get ready the baking dish/tray by coating butter all over and along the sides.
11.Transfer the cake mix to dish/tray and spread evenly using a spatula/spoon.Tilt the dish to all sides(this reduces the bubble formation in the batter and helps to avoid the cracking of the cake top while baking).
12.Bake the cake at 350 deg F for 40-50 minutes in the oven(conventional).Prick the center of the cake using a tooth pick.If it comes clean the cake was baked perfectly.
13.Allow the cake to cool completely outside the oven.
14.Serve and share with friends and family and enjoy the holiday season.
christmas cake 2013
Christmas Cake 2016
1.Orange/lemon zest gives more flavor to the cake.
2.Finally after cooling,you can sprinkle wine/rum to get extra taste and flavor.
3.Do things slowly and carefully for getting a better result..
4.Temperature and time of baking depends on the type of oven.
Please try out this recipe and sent me pics of your cake and valuable comments and suggestions..
First pic was 2012 cake photo and the cake with ribbon is 2014's
Will upload my 2015 cake soon.so stay tuned..
Please send me your cakes pics,if you make a good perfect cake and you family says WOW so that i can uplaod in our FB page.
Merry Christmas to all in advance from my family to yours