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PLUM CAKE WITH ALMOND STREUSEL
Cynthia Salvato


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Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Active time: 30 minutes

When the Italian prune plums arrive I run down to the market and stock up, and my mouth starts to water as I envision this cake hot from the oven. Buy extra plums and freeze them by cutting them in half, removing the stones and freezing them on a baking sheet. Once frozen transfer them into a plastic freezer bag.

  • ¼ cup lukewarm water
  • 2 ½ teaspoons dry active yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 stick (4-ounces) unsalted butter, softened

In a small bowl whisk together the warm water and the yeast; set aside. Put the remaining ingredients in the bowl of a food processor, fitted with the dough blade, add the yeast mixture and pulse until a ball is formed; it will be sticky, don't add any extra flour. Remove the dough from the processor, transfer the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight, it will rise only slightly.

To finish the Plum Cake:

  • 12-14 Italian prune plums
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter, slightly softened
  • ¼ cup blanched almond slices, lightly crushed

Adjust the baking shelf in the oven to the center and preheat to 400 degrees. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and set aside. Halve the plums and remove the stones; set aside. Prepare the crumb topping by blending together the flour, sugar, salt and butter. Rub the mixture with your fingers until crumbly; stir in the almonds and set aside.

Grease a 9-inch spring form pan. Remove the dough from the bowl and on a lightly floured work surface, press the dough with your fingers into a 9 -inch circle; place the dough in the pan and leaving a half inch border at the edge of the dough, arrange the plumb snuggly, like fallen dominos, with the cut side up, in circles, over the surface of the dough. Sprinkle on the crumb topping and bake for 40 to 45 minutes. The topping and crust should be a light brown and the juices of the plums will run.

Serves 4 to 6

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