When the team at Prahran Market send you a mystery box of seasonal goodies to play with, including angelica plums, Pepe Saya cultured butter and decadent 60% dark chocolate from Cioccolato Lombardo …what do you make?
Well, dessert of course. Naturally.
Plums are at their absolute peak at the moment. Admittedly, they’re not my favourite fruit and I’ve rarely baked with them (I know!), but boy oh boy do they work well in cakes AND with chocolate. I was skeptical at first, but the subtle tartness of the plums paired with the intense (yet sweet) dark chocolate works wonders for creating a comforting dessert.
Using the local angelica plums, my favourite Pepe Saya cultured butter and creamy, decadent 60% dark chocolate from Cioccolato Lombardo at the Prahran Market, this light, gluten-free plum and chocolate torta (cake) makes for the perfect farewell to Summer whilst simultaneously waving a big hello to the cooler climes, and comforting eats of Autumn.
Although…any excuse to make (and eat!) cake right?!
The recipe for this plum and dark chocolate torta is adapted from one I found on the London Bakes blog. I just love love love Kathryn’s creations and she always posts recipes for the most wholesome baked goods.
If you are not gluten intolerant and/or dislike the taste of buckwheat flour (it can over-bearing!) then you could easily substitute the portion of buckwheat flour for a white spelt flour.
Also, if you make this cake I would definitely use the plums as halves (not in slices) for a prettier effect. I had convinced myself that there wasn’t enough batter for my tin and thus the cake might not rise enough to secure the plum halves….WRONG.
The cake rose so perfectly but my (precautionary) plum slices and choc chips became lost in a sea of batter, yielding shall we say a ‘rustic’ appearing cake, which tends to be my specialty! Haha. Although, I do rather like how it looks like a giant chocolate chip cookie.
Thank goodness the cake still tasted amazing. The plums turn to a delicious, soft, caramelised mess and the chocolate chips become melted and dreamy. *Sigh*…pass me a fork.
Oh and just between you and me… juicy fresh fig halves in place of plums work an absolute treat, and you all know how I feel about figs right?! #obsessed
ps. if anyone has any delicious plum recipes they love then let me know. I still have quite a few to use.
Plum, Dark Chocolate and Almond Torta
Makes 1 cake.
100 g almond meal
50 g buckwheat flour
85 g rapadura sugar (unrefined cane sugar)
3/4 tsp baking soda (bicarbonate soda)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground vanilla bean
1/4 tsp fine salt
150 g butter
50 g good quality dark chocolate, roughly chopped (or choc chips)
5-6 medium sized plums, halved
Preheat oven to 180 C and thoroughly grease an 8-inch spring form cake tin.
In a medium bowl, beat together the sugar and butter until luscious, pale(r!) and creamy (use handheld electric beaters or a mix master). Keep beating while adding in the eggs, slowly, one at a time. The mixture may still split a little – don’t stress too much about it.
Next, add in remaining dry ingredients (almond meal, buckwheat flour, bicarb soda, salt, cinnamon, vanilla), and gently fold together until you have a pale, luscious and smooth cake batter.
Transfer the batter to your prepared cake tin and evenly distribute using a flat spatula. Trust me, it will look like there is NOT enough batter for the pan (there is!).
Top cake with halved plums and dark chocolate (ps. use the plums as halves…it looks way prettier in the end, then thinner slices that tend to disappear upon baking. As I said, rookie error goes to me!)
Bake cake in preheated oven for approximately 30-40 minutes or until golden and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake removes clean. Allow to cool in the tin for at least 10 minutes.
The plums could easily be replaced with juicy fresh figs or even thick slices of pear. Oh a you could totally mix the chocolate chips through the batter rather than sprinkling on top).
Recipe adapted from London Bakes.
Produce supplied courtesy of Prahran Market, but all recipes and words are my own.