Dec 31, 2010

Fruit Cake / Plum Cake

          There has been a lot of buzz in all cooking blogs for the last 2 weeks and everybody it seemed were busy cooking up their own beautiful fruit cakes. I don't know why I became so late in posting my own... old habits I guess ;) I have always been late to college and never been to a party in time. Doesn't that gives me a VIP stand? Well, I would like to think about it that way ;) But don't think I have never tried to be punctual. Yes, I have tried and tried only to discover that unpunctuality is in my blood, it runs through my veins... Every time it seems the time runs faster than it is supposed to... never waiting for my errands to conclude :(



          Everyday when  you wake up, it seems you have a long day waiting for you... You make breakfast, send your hubby off to office, play around with your kid, have some elevenses, do some cleaning chores, and suddenly you find you are in the midst of the day... and you rush to the kitchen, throw up a very quick lunch, eat it and feed it to your little one, do some cooking experiments, browse a while in the web, becomes a little chatty with your friend at phone and suddenly the calling bell rings and hubby is home. Oh God! it's already evening...  Then you serve your hubby food, talk to him for some time, make the dinner, have your Salah (Prayer) and then you find the day is gone... It is already night and you feel at a loss. There must be at least somebody out there who feels the same way as I do... Sure the time is running a marathon...

         

              So back to my fruit cake story... I just wanted to have a perfect fruit cake and already tried many variations... The target I had in mind tasted very much like the nostalgic 'plum cake' we used to have at festive seasons in India. I was so crazy about it and nothing less than that would do... I still do not know why it was called a 'plum cake'. I don't think they added any plums in it. There was a time when I had thought it was a 'plump cake' because it sure looked round and kinda plump. When my fruit cakes turned out nothing nearer to this cute cake, I resorted to another recipe and had the fruits sunk to the bottom... and another and after a lot of empirical researches I made it, at last! A fruit cake which was almost a perfect 'plum cake'! I made some changes to Chef Alison May's recipe... In fact made it a bit simple. Her recipe didn't use baking powder but more eggs and had to bake it for three hours. I am not a patient person to wait that long for my cake to get cooked, so I reduced the eggs and added baking powder instead. I reduced the fruit volume too because i found the contend in the original recipe so overwhelming. If you want a fruit cake which is fruity on every bite, then you may add more dry fruits say about 800 gram. Here I'm... a little proud of my accomplishment. I got a wonderful, light and moist fruit cake in just one hour!

                                      So it has been quite an eventful year...This would be my last post of the year. Am so happy that I could post this cake before new year :) Good bye 2010.. Welcome 2011!


The recipe goes like this...

Ingredients:
   
220 g plain flour
A pinch of salt
1/2 tsp mixed spice
 ( I used garam masala containing cinnamon, cloves, cardomom,star anice, nutmeg and maise)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
200 g butter
2 tbsp black treacle ( you can also use caramelized sugar syrup)
1 tbsp marmalade (I have already posted the recipe if you want it home made)
1/4 tsp vanilla essence
2 medium eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp baking powder
400 g mixed dried fruit ( i used just black raisins, white raisins and tutti frutti )
50 g chopped mixed peel
100 g glace cherries, chopped
100 g blanched almonds, chopped
150 ml orange juice
200 g brown sugar

Method:

  1.  Soak 400g mixed dry fruit, 50g chopped mixed peel and 100g glace cherries in 150ml orange juice overnight.
  2. The next day, heat your oven to 330 degree F or gas mark 3. Grease a 20cm/8 inch round or an 18cm/7 inch square cake tin and line the bottom and sides with parchment paper.
  3. Sieve 220g plain flour, a pinch of salt, 1/2 teaspoon mixed spice 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 teaspoon baking powder in to a bowl.
  4. Cream 200g butter and 200g brown sugar in a large mixing bowl and mix in 2 table spoon of black treacle, 1 table spoon of marmalade  and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla essence until light and fluffy.
  5. Beat two eggs and fold them a little at a time inti the mixture adding a tablespoon of the flour mixture with the last of the eggs
  6. Fold in the remaining flour mixture until well mixed. Then mix in the soaked fruit mixture with 100g chopped almonds.
  7. Turn the mixture into the prepared tin and bake in the oven for 1 hour and then test with a skewer. Bake until the skewer comes out clean.
  8. Remove from oven and leave to cool in the tin for 15 minutes. Turn out on to a wire rack and leave to cool.
  9. Cut an serve after a few days. The more the cake sits, the more it imbibes the fruit flavour and will be more yummy. So you must be patient to wait at least a day before you cut and serve the cake.

23 comments:

  1. My all time fav cake, look yummy and so inviting...

    Happy New Year 2011 !!!

    Pongal Feast Event

    Kurinji

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  2. It looks sooooooooooooo yum! i am bookmarking this!! Have a Great 2011 !!

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  3. What a lovely cake, thanks so much.

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  4. This cake looks really good!! HAve a great New Year!

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  5. What an exquisite cake! You photographed it so well, I could not resist it. This is a must try recipe for me! DELICIOUS!
    I wish you the best New Year yet!!!

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  6. Wow.. This looks so delicious....
    Wish you and your family a Happy & Prospeous New Year...

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  7. yummy cake and tempting clicks.....happy new year!!!

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  8. Enjoyed reading your writing!/There must be at least somebody out there who feels the same way as I do... / Many people will be in your category,don't worry! :);)

    Fruit cake is fantastic and wish you a happy new year!

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  9. wow...my fav cake...perfect texture,bookmarked.
    Happy New Year!

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  10. Looks so perfect.
    Wishes for a very Happy and prosperous New Year.
    Do drop by
    Padhuskitchen
    when u find time

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  11. this is a beautiful wintertime cake! happy new year!

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  12. This fruit cake looks beautiful! And I'm definitely with you on losing track of time in the busy-ness of the day! Happy New Year!

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  13. Yummy! I am bookmarking this. Happy new year to you!

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  14. yummy, delicious good-looking cake this one is.This one really takes the cake.

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  15. Have a great n prosperous 2011 dear!!
    Plum cake looks so beautiful and delicious! Nice shots.

    US Masala

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  16. What a gorgeous fruit cake that shines without any topping, even a sprinkle of powder sugar!
    So moist, and perfect, that it is very tempting, to say the least.
    I love the photos of it, and the recipe is a "treasure" to keep.
    Thank you for sharing...and wishing you the best that the New Year can bring, in health, prosperity, and happiness!

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  17. Wish u and ur family a happy and prosperous 2011...soo tempting and gorgeous cake..

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  18. all time fav for the Christmas. looks terrific.
    also wish you and your family a very happy new year.

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  19. What a moist fruity cake!
    Happy 2011!
    Angie

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  20. wow yummy fruit cake.

    happy new year

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  21. This is the only time I've been to your site. Thanks for providing more information.
    Also visit my blog post ... Belleville Washers

    ReplyDelete

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