The Breukelen Life

The Breukelen Life

Food, Yoga and Travel in Brooklyn

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Plum Torte

August 12, 2013 , ,


I was thinking, Why does this cake need cinnamon? at the exact moment I pulled it from the cabinet and simultaneously opened the container and spilt it all over myself.

Have you ever split cinnamon on your face? It’s a weird feeling, not unlike sand, but softer, more pungent. I can still taste it through my nose. Yes, weird I know.

Anyways, this cake!

Oh man, once this baby started baking, the smell of lemon and cinnamon wafted through the apartment making it all too clear why this cake was one the most requested from the New York Times. And yes, the cinnamon and lemon started to make sense too.

I’ve had this recipe in my queue for quite a few summers, refusing the use anything other than farmer’s market plums and constantly missing the short season. Not this summer my friends. A quick run for tomatoes turned into a heavy loot to carry home with eggplants and zucchinis at their peak. And of course, among that was a nice pound of sugar plums.

While this recipe asks for Italian purple plums, I made do. I can see why though, the sugar plums are softer and they disintegrated a bit. No worries though because it only gave the cake more of an opportunity to soak up the plum-y goodness.

Overall, this is simple cake and can be used with a variety of summer fruits. The dough is sweet and the crunchy top is worthy of any crème brulee. Enjoy!

1 cup of all-purpose flour
1 tsp of baking powder
large pinch of salt
1 cup sugar (I used 2/3 cup – later versions of the recipe cut to the ¾ cup), plus 1 tbsp (give or take depending on the tartness of the plums)
8 tbsp of unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
12 purple plums, halved and pitted
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp ground cinnamon


1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees

2. Sift the flour, baking soda and salt

3. Cream 1 cup sugar and butter in a large bowl until light in color. Add the dry ingredients and then the eggs.

4. Spoon the batter into an ungreased 9-inch spring form pan.

5. Cover the top of the batter with the plum halves, skin side up.

6. Sprinkle with the remaining tbsp of sugar and the lemon juice. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

7. Bake until golden and the plums are bubbly 45-50 minutes. Cool on rack.


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