Wishing You All Merry X’mas and Happy Holidays! Looking for Kerala Plum Cake-Christmas Fruit Cake then your search ends here.
Kerala Plum Cake-Christmas Fruit Cake is a Christmas specialty in Kerala, South India. Similar to the fruit cake which the Westerners make during this time.During Christmas season, bakeries in Kerala would be selling out these traditional Kerala Plum Cake-Christmas Fruit Cakes and every house will have atleast 2-3 fruit cake boxes.
Kerala plum cake-Christmas Fruit Cake is a tasty and aromatic cake with the combination of soaked fruits, nuts and spices. This kerala plum cake-christmas fruit cake is prepared by chopping all the dry fruits and soaking it in alcohol( rum/brandy/wine). It is usually made well before Christmas, almost a month in advance, and the cake is stored in an airtight container. Then a small amount of Rum/Brandy/Wine is poured over the cake periodically. This is called feeding the cake.
The cake prepared by soaking the fruits and nuts in rum had its origin from Rome and the method is followed in Bahamas. The cake containing good deal of alcohol remains edible for many years. For example, a fruit cake baked in 1878 is kept as an heirloom by a family (Morgan L. Ford) in Tecumseh, Michigan. In 2003 it was sampled by Jay Leno on The Tonight Show. this what I’ve read fromWikipedia. By the way, for those who want a non-alcoholic version could use Orange or apple or Grape juice. If using orange juice than just soak for 1 day only and if you live in a very warm and humid climate, you may want to consider to keep it in fridge or they will spoil. Do not get scared by seeing the lengthy description of the preparation process. I have written it in detail such that you will understand and don’t forget to read the notes at the end.
Now let’s see how Kerala Plum Cake-Christmas Fruit Cake is made…
Have you tried these Cakes ?
Kerala Plum Cake-Christmas Fruit Cake Recipe
Preparation Time : 5-7 days for soaking dry fruits + 20 mins
Baking Time : 45-50
Makes : one 9 inch cake
All purpose flour /Maida : 1 cup + 1 tbsp for tossing the soaked fruits.
Butter : 3/4 cup at room temperature
Sugar : 1 cup
Baking powder : 1 tsp
Vanilla Extract : 1 tsp
Eggs : 2 nos
For Soaking Dry fruits :
Tutti Frutti : 1 cup
Raisins : 1/4 cup
Cherries : 1/4 cup (chopped)
Cashew nuts : 1/4 cup (chopped)
Almonds and Walnuts : 1/4 cup (chopped)
Dates: 1/4 cup (chopped)
Rum/Brandy/Red Wine : 11/2 cup or enough to soak the fruit
For the caramel :
Granulated Sugar : 1/2 cup
Water : 1 tbsp
Water : 1/2 cup
Caraway seeds powder : 1 tsp
Powdered Cinnamon : 1/4 tsp
Powdered Nutmeg : 1/4 tsp
Ginger powder : 1/4 tsp
Cloves powder : 1/4 tsp
How to make Kerala Plum Cake-Christmas Fruit Cake :
To Prepare the Fruits :
1. Chop and soak the dry fruits in rum/wine and keep it in a bottle overnight at room temperature. (Note: You can make this a 2-3 months ahead or even a week before baking the cake. Do shake the jar once in a while. Longer the fruits steep, better the flavor.I prepared the dried fruits a week ahead before baking.)
To Prepare to Caramel :
2. Heat a heavy bottomed vessel and add the sugar with a tbsp of water on medium high heat. You will find that the sugar will
melt and start to change color. Don’t stir, you can swirl the vessel, once or twice. Do not allow any sugar crystals to get on the sides of the pan and be sure to moisten all the sugar with the water. When you find that the color has changed to a little darker golden brown color, turn off heat. Immediately, pour half a cup of water very carefully into the caramel and stir and mix well. Cool the caramel before adding to the cake batter. (Note: Be careful, the liquid will splash when you pour the water into the hot caramel. The color of caramelized sugar is the key to the color of the cake. If you don’t caramelize well, you will not get the dark color.)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F/180 degree C.
2. Sift the flour, baking powder and keep a
3. Separate egg yolks from the whites. In a separate bowl, whisk egg yolks with vanilla.
4. Cream butter and sugar till creamy and combined well.
5. Add the egg yolk mixture little by little, alternating with a tbsp of the sieved flour and combine till smooth
syrup and spice powders and beat thoroughly till everything is creamy and combined.
7. Add the flour in small quantities and gently fold in with a wooden spoon with a wooden spoon or with rubber spatula.
8. After mixing well, drain the soaked fruits and keep half a cup of soaked fruits aside; add the rest of the fruits to the batter and gently fold them into the batter. (Note : Don’t beat the flour just flod gently by doing this you’ll get the soft moist cake.)
9. Coat the 1/2 cup fruits, kept aside earlier, with 1 tbsp flour and set it aside.
10. Whisk separated egg whites till it forms stiff peaks and gently fold into the cake batter till well combined.
11. Grease the cake tins and line with parchment paper. Pour batter up to half of the prepared cake tins and just before smoothening the tops, add the fruits tossed in flour and then level the top with spatula, making sure that the fruits are coated with batter as well. (Note: Tossing the fruits in flour, prevent fruit from sinking to the bottom of the cake)
12. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
13. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes.
14. Prick little holes on top of the cake with fork and then sprinkle a teaspoon or two of rum / wine/brandy over cake, (This can enhance the flavour and increases its life span) let it sink in for a few minutes and invert them onto wire rack and let it cool completely before cut
ting. Serve and Enjoy!
- The baking time can vary depending on the oven and the size of the tin used.
- If the top of the cake browns quickly, then cover the top with butter paper or aluminium foil.
- Cover the cake with plastic wraps or parchment paper and in aluminum foil and keep it for 4 to 5 days for a better taste.
- To make sure the cake keeps long without spoiling use dry vessels and spoons when mixing the batter
- Caramel should be cooled before adding it to the batter. Caramel can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for a few days.
- Beating egg whites separately makes a huge difference in this cake.
- For alcohol free version :You can substitute rum/wine with apple juice or orange juice or pineapple juice. If using orange juice than just soak for 1 day only and if you live in a very warm and humid climate, you may want to consider to keep it in fridge or they will spoil.
- For more dark color you can use same quantity of light brown sugar instead of white sugar
- Beating the egg whites is the most important step. It makes the cake really soft if you beat really well but same time take care not to over-beat it. You can test them by lifting the beaters straight up from the egg whites. Peaks will form and the tips will curl over and when the bowl is tilted, the mixture should not slide around. If not continue beating for few seconds more and do the test again and gently fold the egg whites to batter. If they sit for more than 10 minutes, they lose stability and start to deflate.
- Keep the dairy ingredients and eggs at room temperature before you begin.
- Make sure that the jar you use for soaking the fruits is free of any water and has a tight lid.
- Soak your dried fruits in rum/brandy/wine couple of months ahead or if you don’t have enough time then soak week before baking the cake.
- Do shake the jar once in a while. Longer the fruits steep, better the flavor.
- Tossing the fruits in flour, prevents fruit from sinking to the bottom of the cake.
- Adding orange peels to cake batter enhances the flavour a lot.
- Use refined sugar that is absolutely free of impurities, to prevent crystallization.
- The longer the caramel cooks the harder it will become as it cools.
- After the caramel is prepared, do not stir it too much, as this may eventually cause crystallization.
- If after cooling the caramel is too hard, re-heat it and add more water, milk or heavy cream to thin it.
- If after cooling the caramel is too liquidy, make a second batch and cook the caramel slightly longer, then mix the two together.
- Caramel can be stored in room temperature, up to 3 days; refrigerated, at least 3 months. To reheat: Place it in a bowl in a pan of simmering water and heat, stirring occasionally, until warm for 5 minutes or soaking utensils in hot water will remove hardened caramel.
- Prick little holes on top of the cake with fork and then sprinkle a teaspoon or two of Rum / brandy over cake, let it sink in for a few minutes. Cover and wrap well with parchment paper and then in aluminum foil for storage.
If you haven’t tried yet,do try this Kerala Plum Cake-Christmas Fruit Cake and let me know how it turned out for you. Enjoy!
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