The Ultimate Plum Cake
10 AM may be too early to drink rum, but you can always eat this cake instead!
A must-have during Christmas, Plum cakes are everything that you need to be full and happy high! This recipe is super simple and I'm giving you two versions of it in a single post. An alcoholic-egg version and a non-alcoholic, eggless version. Trust me, both of them are equally delicious and will make you want to eat another bite as soon as you're done with the first one.
A plum cake is absolutely incomplete without a perfect blend of spices. I like to make mine in a big batch and store it for the whole year. It keeps really well and the aroma just awakens the whole house when I bake with it. Let's hop right into the Spice Mix. It's Earthy, it's spicy, it's aromatic. Basically it's everything that I want it to be. It can be used in various recipes like Speculoos cookies, Gingerbread, butter cookies, I even use a pinch of it in chai sometimes.
For the Spice Mix (Grind into a fine powder using a blender)
20-25 pods Cardamom
15-18 Black Peppercorns
6-10 Star Anise
15-20g Dry Ginger Powder
This recipe will make quite a lot. But what I've noticed is that it just doesn't taste the same if I make only half a batch of it. So make a big batch and distribute it amongst your friends as an edible gift, how smart no?
Now for the plum part of our cake... The soaked dried fruits. I really can't get over how well these fruits keep all through the year in a dark place when soaked in rum. I like to choose colourful dried fruits so that when you slice into the cake you can see bits of rainbow colours studded beautifully. With dried black raisins, blueberries, kiwi slices, apricots, Orange peels, Cranberries I have all the colours to make a rainbow. Then I add in additional flavour bombs like dried figs and golden raisins. Add as many types of dried fruits as you like. It really makes no difference what so ever. Just make sure that the final weight matches the recipe. Douse all these into a heavy hand of rum if you want to keep things authentic. If you're going the non-alcoholic route, use Cocoa cola instead!
Soak them at least for 24 hours before using. The good part is if you're using Rum, these can be stored for years and years and you can bake a plum cake anytime you feel like it. I like to soak them in rum for a week in a dark place covered in a black cloth. Then I place them in the freezer. Because of the alcohol and sugars oozing out of the dried fruits, it never really freezes into a rock and can be used without really thawing the whole thing. Although I would suggest you defrost it in the microwave for about a minute so that it doesn't affect the consistency of your cake batter. Which brand of rum I use, you ask? Old Monk all the way baby!!!
For the Soaked Dried Fruits (Soak over night or upto 1 year)
100g Golden Raisins
100g Black Raisins
50g Dried Figs
50g Dried Blueberries
50g Dried Kiwi
25g Lemon Peel
25g Orange Peel
500ml Rum / Coca Cola
And now for the actual cake which is super easy to make! I love adding cocoa powder to the cake batter because it brings in another level of depth to the flavour of rum. If you don't want that, just substitute it with the same quantity of flour.
I use yogurt to make the eggless version because it works really well without changing the texture of our final product.
For the Sponge
2 eggs / 90g of Yogurt
3 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tsp spice mix
300g Soaked dry fruits
Melt the butter in a bowl and add in sugar, eggs or yogurt (based on your choice), Cocoa powder and the Spice mix. Whisk it together get rid of all the lumps. Fold in the flour and then add your soaked fruits. You may use the liquid based on the consistency of the batter. You don't want it to be too runny or too thick. Pour it into a mold and tap once to get rid of any big air gaps. Then bake at 150-degree celsius for at least 40-50 minutes. You can also bake it into logs if you're looking to gift it to your friends.
This makes for a great centerpiece at dinner parties and you can pour some additional rum onto the cake after it has cooled down if you're trying to get anyone drunk. You'll have a merry time with this cake, I promise.
So go on, try the recipe out and let me know how it turns out in the comments section below. Watch the video to learn how to make the Coca-cola - egg-free version of this cake!