Plums are one of my favourite Autumn fruits, particularly the Victoria variety which always remind me of my grandparents who had one in their garden. Many happy memories conjured by this seasonal fruit. This sticky chocolate plum cake balances sharp plums with an almond-rich chocolate sponge, flecked with chocolate chunks. To make it, you will need:
175g unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus extra for greasing
175g dark brown muscovado sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
125g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
50g cocoa powder, sifted
175g ground almonds
75g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), roughly chopped
400g plums, halved
2 tbsp demerara sugar
3 tbsp plum preserve or jam
2 tbsp toasted flaked almonds
Preheat the oven to 180C, Gas 4. Grease and line a 23cm loose-bottomed cake tin. Beat together the butter and muscovado sugar until fluffy, then gradually whisk in the eggs.
Fold in the flour, baking powder, cocoa and ground almonds, followed by the chocolate.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin, levelling the surface with the back of the spoon (it will be quite thick). Arrange the plums on top, cut-side up, pressing them down lightly so that they are pushed slightly into the mixture.
Sprinkle over the demerara sugar and bake for 1 hour – 1 hour 15 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool completely in the tin. Optional: before serving, melt the preserve or jam in a small pan with a splash of water. Brush over the top of the cake and scatter with the flaked almonds.
What are you baking this weekend?