Plum cake/ Christmas cake/ Fruit cake is a very aromatic cake with distinct flavors and taste from any other regular cake and is usually prepared during Christmas as the name goes. Christmas cake/ Plum cake is made with all purpose flour, caramelized sugar syrup, eggs, spices and loaded with dry fruits and nuts. People who are so used to having this cake will know that apart from taste, its color is also one important factor in getting this cake right.
The original plum cake/ Christmas cake’s preparation actually starts 20 days before its making, yes, by soaking dry fruits in rum, which is one of the main essence in turning this cake an yummy one. But the below recipe is a MUCH WAITED AND WANTED recipe that people usually search in internet and lots of people have discussed about, yes this plum cake/ Christmas cake is ALCOHOL FREE ALCOHOL FREE and is instant, meaning no soaking or any waiting.
During my childhood when my grandparents worked in the same school( french medium) as principal and headmistress, from where they gathered a lot of friends and colleagues who are Christians, gave me an opportunity to know about this cake. So every year on the day of Christmas or even before that they would bring loads and loads of this plum cakes/ Christmas cakes for us say about 100 number. Having eaten and used to so many cakes, (without knowing the fact they were made with rum?) I wanted to make a version of the same plum cake without alcohol. So got recipes from all those dear ones and compiled a non- alcoholic recipe in my version which taste exactly like the original plum cake/ Christmas cake that best suits for my family. Finally got it right and I m so happy with color and taste and it came just perfect like how i used to make it years ago!
So I replaced rum with apple juice and instead of soaking I boiled the dry fruits in little water making it simple and easy for even beginners to make and bake. This recipe involves 3 different preparation combined into one and baked.
- Boiling of dry fruits
- Caramelization of sugar
- Grinding of spice powder
Below I have mentioned every possible step in detail which makes it look little longer, but it is very easy to make and you will melt in it taste. So lets get to the making!
THIS PLUM CAKE RECIPE CANNOT BE REPRODUCED IN ANY FORM FOR ANY OTHER BLOG PURPOSE.
- All purpose flour – 1 ¼ cup
- Egg – 2
- Oil/ Butter – ½ cup
- Sugar – ½ cup
- Apple juice – ¼ cup (store bought)
- Chopped cashews – ¼ cup
- Dry ginger powder – ¼ tsp
- Vanilla syrup– 1 tsp
- Baking powder – 1 tsp
Ingredients for caramelization
- Sugar – ½ cup
- Water – 1 tbsp
- Plum- ¼ cup
- Raisins- 1/3 cup
- Apricot – ¼ cup
- Dates – 1/3 cup
- Tutti frutti – ¼ cup
- Cloves – 2
- Cardamom – 1
- Cinnamon – ¼ stick
- Sugar – 1 tsp
How to make plum cake with step by step images
- Heat a pan add sugar and 1 tbsp water. Mix well and let the sugar dissolve. Put the flame to medium and let the sugar syrup start bubbling and change its color. We want the syrup to be dark brown in color. Do not panic with the smell. Put off the flame when it reaches dark brown color.
- Transfer it a microwave safe bowl. Allow it to cool down. When the caramel cools down it will harden which is common. You can pour little hot water and melt it before using.
- Now chop all the dry fruits and keep it aside. Heat little water in a pan, add the chopped dry fruits and allow it to boil for a minute or 2. Put off the flame and drain the water. (This step eliminates the time involved for soaking). Allow it to cool down.
- Now add 1 tbsp all purpose flour to the boiled dry fruits and toss well. this step helps the dry fruits not to sink to the bottom of the cake.
- In a blender add cloves, cinnamon stick and cardamom. Grind it once then add sugar and grind it a blender and keep it aside.
- In a bowl add all purpose flour and baking powder. Mix well and keep it aside.
- In a bowl break 2 eggs and add oil. Using a hand blender blend it for 3 minutes. (If using whisk blend it for 10 to 12 minutes).
- When it looks combined add all purpose flour and blend it again. When it looks incorporated add sugar. Blend it again till combined.
- Now add the caramel, vanilla syrup, apple juice, spice powder and dry ginger powder. Mix well and add flour dusted fruits and chopped cashews. Fold it in the batter.
- Grease a loaf pan/ cake pan with butter/ oil. Now pour the batter in it and garnish it with few cashews.
- Now place it in preheated oven at 350 degree and bake for 40- 50 minutes. Mine took only 40 minutes. If it is not done in the prescribed time keep it for some more time.
- When done insert a toothpick in the center of the cake to check if it is fully baked. Keep it in a cooling rack and allow it cool down. Using a knife slice them and serve.