Plum buckle: a delicious marriage of cake and fruit
Picking plums is its own reward. The trees are small, the fruit easily reached and sampling opportunities rampant. In addition to fresh eating, plums plate up in the kitchen as a versatile fruit, perfect for baking, canning, jamming or just about any culinary road you wish to lead them down. As an avid baker, I love to make plum buckle, a buttery cake bolstered with ground almonds and topped with plums that bake into the batter like stained glass rondels.
While plum buckle is deceptively easy to make, the cake serves up as something special, a real showstopper. Good looks draw the diner in, but the flavor, texture, crumb and fruity goodness make plum buckle a dessert you’ll make again and again.
So in a world of grunts, slumps, cobblers and crisps, just what is a buckle? A buckle is basically a stiff cake batter that you top with fruit and dust with sugar.
As the buckle bakes, the fruit softens and sinks into the batter.
As the name implies, the cake buckles under the weight of the plums and the top of the cake is crowned with gooey fruit goodness.
Recipe: Plum Buckle
- 1/2 cup whole almonds
- 1 1/2 Cups all purpose flour
- 1 Teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 Teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 Cup butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 Teaspoon almond extract
- 10-12 plums (halved and pitted)
- 1 Teaspoon cinnamon
- 3 Tablespoons sugar
|Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.|
|Butter spring form pan (any size, smaller for thicker cake, larger for thinner) dust with flour. Add parchment paper or wax paper to the bottom of the pan.|
|Grind almonds in food processor until coarse meal. Add to flour, baking powder and salt.|
|In mixer, beat butter and sugar until smooth. Add eggs, blend further. Add vanilla and almond extract.|
|Add flour mixture slowly to batter.|
|Batter will be stiff. Transfer to cake pan and smooth out with spatula.|
|Top cake with plum halves placed side by side. |
|Mix cinnamon and 3 Teaspoons of sugar and spoon over plums.|
|Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until toothpick is inserted and comes out clean.|
|Cool for 30 minutes before eating.|