Almond and Plum Snack Cake
The August 2020 Food & Wine ran an article about chefs organizing bake sales to benefit various charities around the country. I’ve already written about that (see Back-to-School Toffee-Apricot-Oat Cookies) but I have to do it again.
I don’t mean write about the bake sale idea, which is pretty awesome. I mean write about the same story, because there’s another recipe there that my family thought was stellar. Like This might be the best cake you’ve ever made stellar.
The Almond and Plum Snack Cake from Gramercy Tavern pastry chef Miro Uskokovic is a dense, moist (sorry) cake made extra addictive with almond paste. It’s sweet, but not too, and the plums on top sort of melt into jam-like fruit with a sweet-tart flavor. Truly addictive.
I highly recommend making an Almond and Plum Snack Cake for Rosh Hashanah, but I also recommend making it just because. Cut into squares, this cake could be breakfast (fruit, remember?), snack or dessert.
Almond and Plum Snack Cake
From Gramercy Tavern pastry chef Miro Uskokovic
1 ½ cups plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
1 ¼ cups unsalted butter, softened
8 ounces almond paste, at room temperature, crumbled, divided
2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 ½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest plus 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, divided
4 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 ¾ cups bleached cake flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 medium-sized red plums, cut into ¾-inch wedges
½ cup sliced almonds
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine 1 ½ cups sugar, butter, ½ cup almond paste, baking powder, salt and lemon zest in the bowl of a food processor. Process until light, creamy and smooth, about 45 seconds. With the processor running, add eggs, one at a time, incorporating fully after each addition. Mixture should look thick and fluffy. Add the sour cream, and process until fully incorporated, about 30 seconds, stopping to scrape the bowl as needed.
Whisk together the cake flour and all-purpose flour in a large bowl. Add the sugar mixture to the flour mixture; whisk just until all dry ingredients are incorporated. Using a rubber spatula, fold the batter to thoroughly combine ingredients.
Toss together the plums and lemon juice in a medium bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Line a 13-by-9-inch baking pan with parchment paper; lightly grease with cooking spray. Spread batter in the prepared pan, smoothing it with an offset spatula. Sprinkle remaining crumbled almond paste over batter. Arrange plums over top, and sprinkle with almonds and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar.
Bake the cake until lightly browned and a wooden pick inserted into the center comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Transfer the cake in the pan to a wire rack, and let cool completely, about 2 hours.
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