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This is a simple cake to make with lots of flavor. I add ginger to the batter for its warmth and zing, and cardamom for its subtle and welcome citrusy spiciness. The ginger and cardamom’s perfumy-ness and subtle heat also serve to accentuate the fruitiness in the plums. You can use any plum or pluot for this cake, and I like ones that are slightly firm and ripe, and not too small. This recipe can be made dairy free by using vegan butter, and the flour can be swapped for a gluten free all purpose mix. Like any good holiday recipe, sunken plum cake tastes even better made a day in advance. At dinner, I love to serve the cake topped with whipped cream or ice cream, but this also makes a delicious indulgent breakfast treat.
Sunken Plum Cake
- ½ cup (1 stick) vegan butter or unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup honey
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- 1¼ cup all purpose flour or gluten free all purpose flour
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon salt if using unsalted butter, pinch of salt if using vegan butter
- 4-5 plums, halved, pitted and sliced ¼” thick
- Turbinado/raw sugar, for sprinkling on top
- ¼ cup honey for the glaze (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Grease and line a 9” springform pan with parchment paper, or you can also make this in a 9” x 9” baking dish.
Cream together vegan butter/butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes, using either a handheld mixer or stand mixer with the paddle attachment.
Add the honey to the sugar mixture and mix until well incorporated.
Add the eggs, vanilla, and freshly grated ginger and mix until they are also well incorporated.
Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, and cardamom together. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and mix until just incorporated. Be careful not to over-mix.
Pour the batter into the lined and greased cake pan. Add the sliced plums on top of the cake, they will sink as they bake. Top the cake with a generous sprinkling of Turbinado/raw sugar, or regular sugar if you don’t have raw sugar.
Bake 35-40 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean when tested in the center of the cake.
If desired, you can brush honey on top of the cake once it has cooled: heat ¼ cup of honey until just warm, and then brush it over the cake.
Serve topped with whipped cream or ice cream. Can be made a day in advance.