When I’m flipping through recipes I make a list in my mind of things I want to cook.
If it’s not the season of whatever ingredient I need, they refuse to leave my brain until I see them at the market.
Every time, without fail, I end up with seasonal fruits and vegetables lying around and no idea whatsoever about what I had originally wanted to do with them.
So these plums, having expired as a juicy fruit meant to be eaten on their own while thinking about the Tuscan sun, arein need of an emergency recipe.
These days I like to use cardamom and found the perfect recipe in one of my favorite new books.
I made it as a loaf and think it’s better, a little taller.
PLUM LOAF CAKE
slightly adapted from Dorie Greenspan: Baking from my home to yours
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cardamom
5 Tbs. (80 grs) butter, at room temperature
¾ cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/3 cup oil, such as canola or safflower
Grated zest of 1 orange
1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
6 to 8 purple or red plums, halved and pitted
1 Tbs light brown sugar + pinch cinammon
Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC)
Butter a loaf pan 8×5 inch (11×22 cm), dust the inside with flour, tap out excess.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and cardamom together.
Working with a stand mixer or a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter at medium speed until soft and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add the sugar and beat for another 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for a minute after each addition.On medium speed, beat in the oil, orange zest and vanilla. The batter will look very light and smooth, almost satiny. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients, mixing only until they are incorporated.
Run a spatula around the bowl and under the batter, just to make sure there are no dry spots, then scrape the batter into the pan and smooth the top. Arrange the plums cut side up in the batter, jiggling the plums a tad just so they settle comfortably into the batter.
Mix 2 Tbs sugar and cinnamon and dust the top evenly.
Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until top is honey brown and puffed around the plums and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.
Transfer to rack and cool, then run a knife around the sides of the pan and unmold the cake.Invert onto serving plate.