Thursday, December 25, 2014

Kerala Plum Cake / Rum/Brandy - Fruit Cake - Step by Step Recipe. Merry Christmas !

With few more years of experiences making cakes I feel I should be updating posts in my blog one at a time from now on. This Christmas cake recipe was posted in 2014 but  there's some changes that made my cake taste and look better so updating it here :) 

Christmas cake I made few years ago :) Photos looks better now and definitely the cake tastes better too so thought to update the recipe with the changes made

By the way Merry Christmas 2020 !!

Few years  back this time of the year, my Dad( Achachen ) was diagnosed with Cancer, the most unforgettable Christmas gift my family ever received and he lived for just an other month more,
from then Christmas never gave me much happiness as it used to. 
Still the feel of  Joy during Christmas is miraculous, laughter and cheers in the air is contagious, 
though this day is unforgettable in my life, I tend to forget the painful moments with the good spirit Christmas season spreads.
Fruit cake /Plum cake is  a Christmas specialty in Kerala, similar to the fruit cake the Westerners have during this time, assuming  it might  be the influence from the Europeans when they ruled.

Following my Mom's recipe passed on to her from her Mom 😍

The quantity given here makes  one 8- inch sized cake.
But there's  no specific measurement cup you will need to make this cake unlike other cakes as they say it is equal measurements of All purpose Flour + Sugar + Butter/oil + Dry fruits + Eggs (Approximately weighs same) 


For Batter

All Purpose Flour/ Maida - 1 and 1/2 cup
A pinch of salt.
Baking Powder - 1 and 1/2 tsp
Butter - 1/2 cup and  Oil - 1/2 cup  (Butter in Room Temperature)
White Sugar - 1 cup (Powder sugar along with the spices given below) 
Egg - 4 No's
Orange Juice and Orange Rind/ Skin grated - from 1 Orange. May use Lemmon instead of Orange too.
Mixed Fruit Jam - 1 Tbsp.
Vanilla essence - 1 Tsp

For Dry Fruits and Soaking 

Mixed Fruits - 1 and 1/2 cup (Same as Flour Qty. May add more or less per preference) 

Rum/Brandy or Wine - 2 Cups (Approx.)

Spices Needed. 
It is easier to grind the spices below with the sugar to power it so you don't need to grind these separately 

Cardamom - 2 to 4 No's
Nutmeg - 1/4 tsp
Cinnamon - 1/4 tsp
Cloves - 2 no's 
Cake Jeera/ Shahjeera - 1/2 tsp (I didn't use)
Dry Ginger Powder - 1/4 tsp (Optional) 

For Color / Caramel  - For the Dark Color

White Sugar - 1/2 cup
Water -  1/2 cup 
Cocoa Powder - 1 tbsp (Optional) 


* Chop dry fruits and soak them in Rum/ Brandy or Wine for at least a day. I soak these during the first week of December to make cakes few days before Christmas. 
If you are planning to make non alcoholic version, soaking dry fruits in Orange juice or grape juice would be a good option. Keep this soaked for a day in the refrigerator. Soaking makes the fruits soggy and flavorful. 

Prepare the Batter 

* For caramelizing Sugar (For color) - Heat sugar in a thick bottom pan (keep heat in medium to low as it tends to brown fast)  when it starts to melt, add 1tbsp water to it and wait to completely melt the same and turn color, tilt the pan in between to melt sugar evenly, when color is brown, pour rest of the water to it and allow to boil, then switch off the heat. Add cocoa to the caramel syrup , stir to combine and keep aside to cool. 

* Grease Pan with butter or Non stick spray. Preheat Oven to 310 F (Lower temperature is the best to bake this cake since the ingredients in this cake is dense , it needs some extra time of baking in low heat) 
*  Sift Flour with salt and Baking Powder. Keep aside.

* Separate the Egg whites from yolk. Beat Egg whites till light and fluffy and keep aside. 
If you want the cake to stay thick and dense and less airy then you may skip this step and beat eggs together (whole ) instead of separating it. 
I used to make it dense and thick (like the image below)  but for some reason I liked it the Bakery style -  airy cake lately for which we'll need to beat the egg whites and yolks separately. 

* Beat Butter (Room Temperature), Oil  with powdered sugar  (sugar powdered with the spices)  till well combined. Add in egg yolks one at a time and beat till the mixture looks light and fluffy.

 * Add in Vanilla essence, Orange Juice and Orange Rind.

* Mix  Jam and the soaked  dry fruits to it (May add some extra chopped nuts). 
 Slowly add in the sifted flour Mixture and caramel mixture alternately , stirring the batter in low speed if using a cake mixer. 

* Last but not the least - fold in the beaten egg white to slowly mix it into the cake batter. Do not over mix. 

* Pour the batter to the greased pan (May place a paper liner to the bottom and sides of the cake dish just in case) Pour batter to almost 3/4th of the Pan as this cake wouldn't rise much. 
Bake in preheated Oven in 310 F for 45 to 50 Minutes until a tooth pick comes out clean. 

* Keep cakes  to cool , allow the flavors to set for a few days  before you cut the same, initially it will be little more moist than the usual cake , when it sits it matures to become a nice rich fruit flavored cake. The aroma is spreads at home is Christmassy :)  

Notes :

            : Always bake this cake in low temperature -   slow and steady wins the race :D 


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year !!