All through my childhood, I have always had a fancy for the Kerala Style Plum Cake. It is available in Kerala Bakeries, in Chennai, and as you even pass through them, one simply cannot walk by. The aromas of freshly baked bread, cup cakes, vanilla sponge cakes, biscuits, vegetable puffs, and yes my favourite – the plum cake, all linger around you as you walk past them. One whiff of this aroma, and you are a goner. Almost every time these bakeries are “conveniently” found near auto stands, crowded bus stops or colleges and schools. It is inevitable to ignore these bakeries without tasting their sweet and tart delicacies! When I found Anu`s Eggless Fruit Cake , Jyothi`s Plum Cake and so many others on the websites, it was really time to put my thoughts on paper and try them out…My daughters and TH loved them and finished them up almost in two days flat!!! Shall definitely try them again!!!
2 Cups All Purpose Flour.
1 1/2 Tsp Baking Powder.
1/2 Tsp Baking Soda.
1/4 Tsp Nutmeg Powder.
1/4 Tsp Cinnamon Powder.
1/4 Tsp Nutmeg Powder.
2 Cups of a Mixture of Dark Raisins, Currants, Figs, Dates Tutti Fruiti – (Green Cherry Halves, Orange Peel Halves, Red Cherries) Apricots, Cashews and other nuts.
1 Stick of Butter at Room temperature.
1/2 Cup Melted Margarine.
1/2 Cup Orange Juice.
1 Cup Light Cane Sugar.
1 Cup Water.
1 Tsp Baking Soda.
1 Tbsp Orange Zest.
2 Tbsp Yoghurt.
1 Cup Smoothly Mashed Boiled Potatoes.
1/2 Overripe Banana.
1 Tsp Vanilla Essence.
1 Tsp Rose Essence.
2 Tbsp Cranberry Jam.
- The first step is essentially preparing the wet ingredients. For this take a saucepan and add all the dry fruits, sugar, butter, maple syrup, orange juice and water.
- Stir it all well and place over heat on medium flame until the sugar melts.
- Once the sugar melts, and the liquid boils, lower the flame to medium low and keep stirring for about 20 minutes. Switch off the flame, allow to cool and then add the 1 tsp baking soda to it. Set aside. By now all the dry fruits would have plumped up and absorbed all the flavours, and in turn drawn out their flavours to be absorbed by the fluids.
- Preheat the oven to 350F and grease a round 9 inch cake pan with melted butter. Set aside.
- Mash the boiled potatoes in to a soft creamy mix, devoid of any clots. Mash the overripe banana.
- Once the mixture has reached room temperature, stir in the whisked boiled potatoes, whisked yoghurt, vanilla essence, cinnamon powder, and nutmeg powder, banana, and whisk well until you see a soft creamy mix. Fold in the flour, nuts and carefully incorporate it until you get a homogeneous mix.
- Slowly spoon out the batter in to the greased cake pan and gently smooth the top with the help of a spatula.
- Decorate with almonds and other nuts on the top, but my daughter shares a love-hate relationship with almonds and I decided to best leave it out when I am making her a cake…
- Cover the cake pan with an aluminum foil and bake for around 45 mins to 1 hour depending on whether the cake is completely done and a toothpick inserted in to the cake comes out clean.
- Allow the cake to cool well before you flip it on to a cake plate.
- Allow sufficient time for the cake to set – around 2-3 hours before you try to slice it. Since this cake is very dense, it takes a little time to set, and so any attempt to cut it might cause the cake to crumble a little.
- Dollop some fresh cream or eat it like me just like that and allow the tastes of sweetness from the maple syrup and dry fruits, and a little tang from the orange zest to take over your senses.