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plum and walnut cake

As you know I have a bit of a thing about plums - 10 plum recipes on the blog to date and counting. It's plum season here in Sydney so while these beauties are in the shops I've been baking as many plum desserts as I can. If you think this plum cake recipe sounds familiar it's because it is. A recipe for Nigel Slater's Moist Plum Cake first appeared on my blog in 2012 and I've been planning to remake it ever since. 



Why you might ask? In it's first incarnation, all the plums sank to the bottom of the cake. Whilst the cake was very moist and delicious it didn't look so pretty so I thought I'd work on a way of keeping some of the plum slices on top of the cake.

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I've made this cake twice now and by swapping the proportions of the flour and almond meal; cutting the plums into thinner slices and making 2 layers of plums I think I've got this cake sorted out in the best possible way.

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The cake is still very moist but best of all you still have plum slices on the top of the cake. How many plums you'll need will be determined by the type of plums available. I used a combination of sugar plums and red plums which are quite small so I used about 12 plums.

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Here's the recipe for you, which makes a 17 cm cake. if you want to make a 20 cm cake refer to the original recipe. For all my recipes, I use a 250 ml cup and a 20 ml tablespoon. All eggs are 60 grams and my oven is a conventional oven not fan forced, so you may need to reduce your oven temperature by 20°C

Plum and walnut cake, adapted from a Nigel Slater recipe

Ingredients
100g unsalted butter
100 g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla
12 plums
2 large eggs
70 g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
50g ground almonds
35g toasted walnuts, finely chopped 

Method
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.Grease and line a 17cm tin with baking paper. Meanwhile, halve the plums, remove the stones, then cut each half into quarters. Sprinkle over half a tablespoon of caster sugar and set aside.


In a large bowl, beat the butter, sugar and vanilla until it is pale and fluffy.
Beat the eggs lightly with a fork, then gradually add to the butter and sugar mixture. Sift the four and baking powder together then fold them gently into the mixture. Fold in the ground almonds followed by the walnuts. 

Spoon half the mixture into the cake tin. Place half the plum slices in concentric circles on top of the batter without overlapping, then carefully spoon the remaining mixture over the plums. Place the remaining plum slices decoratively on the cake. 

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Bake for 1 hour in the centre of the oven, then test with a skewer. If it comes out clean, the cake is ready. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 15 minutes before turning out.

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I had my slice for dessert and it was as moist and delicious as I remembered. I took the rest of the cake into work today and not one crumb is left - a very good sign.


See you all again next week.

Bye for now,

Jillian
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