It’s that day of the year again when the evenings and nights will be filled with celebrations of Christmas. The real essence of Christmas cannot be fulfilled without a delicious loaf of plum cake. Plum Cake is a type of fruit cake that is prepared and served extensively during the Christmas season. Most plum cakes during Christmas also have wine or rum as one of their ingredients.
This cake is the perfect Christmas-baked goodie to give out as an edible gift to friends and family. Make this delicious sugar-free plum fruit cake and I am sure you will be making it again next year. This cake is loaded with candied dried fruits & nuts. The dried fruits & nuts are soaked in orange juice for 20 minutes. Orange juice will make this cake refreshing. This cake will make us slip into the festive spirit.
Baking with whole wheat flour – I have been baking for the last eleven years & still, it gives me joy and the opportunity to try out something new and fresh. Baking is about mixing the right ingredients in the right amount and baking at the right temperature for the correct duration. And with experience, you understand how certain ingredients mix well with others and you can be creative with your baking.
Baking mainly includes ingredients like maida, eggs, and sugar which can hamper your toned waistline. Here is a solution. You can substitute for maida, whole milk, margarine, butter, sugar, whole eggs. Maida or all-purpose flour can be replaced with whole wheat flour. Since whole wheat flour is light, adds more nutrition, not to mention nutty and tasty flavor, to baked goods and other flour-based recipes.
Jaggery instead of sugar – Every year with the advent of winter, we see jaggery taking over the market. And why not? Jaggery has this magical property to keep your body warm from within. We all know that “Gur” is a nutritious and healthy alternative to sugar. Gur or jaggery gives it a unique flavor and is known to be super-healthy for your body. By adding jaggery this dessert becomes more nutritious and healthier. This natural sweetener is known to provide relief from the pollution and the side effects of toxic air. It cleanses the system from within and with its anti-allergic properties, gur or jaggery can provide relief from all types of respiratory diseases.
Whole Wheat Flour – 1 & 1/2 cups + 1 tbsp
Soaked dried fruit – 1 cup
Chopped nuts – 1/2 cup ( Cashews, Walnuts, Almonds, Pistachios )
Room temperature milk – 1 cup
Grated jaggery – 3/4 cup
Refined Oil – 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp
Chopped cherries -1/3 cup
Baking powder – 1 tsp
Baking Soda – 1/2 tsp
Cinnamon powder – 1/2 tsp
- In a bowl mix 1 tbsp of flour chopped nuts. Mix them well. Then in a same bowl add dry ingredients.
- Dry Ingredients – In a bowl, sift flour, baking powder and baking soda. Now mix them with coated nuts (step 1).
- Wet Ingredients – Mix grated jaggery, oil and milk in a grinder until smooth.
- Now mix dry and wet ingredients with soaked dried fruits & chopped cherries. Cake batter is ready to bake.
- Pour batter into the pan and tab the cake pan on a countertop to release any large air bubbles.
- Sprinkle some soaked dried fruits, nuts and few chopped cherries over prepared cake batter and with help of spatula press gently.
- Put the pan into the preheated wok and bake it for 1 hour 10 minutes.
- When cake is done, allow to cool for 10 minutes. Remove cake from the pan and set them on a rack set over a tray or sheet pan.
- Allow cake to cool completely before slicing.
- Always room temperature milk when cooking jaggery. This is a foolproof way to prevent curdling of milk. If the milk is hot the chances of milk curdling are higher.
- If cake batter looks dry, add 2- 4 tbsp of milk.
- Baking time may vary.
- You can add spices like nutmeg powder and fennel seeds powder as well.
- If baking in Oven: Bake in the preheated oven at 180 deg Celsius or around 360 Fahrenheit for about 1 hour 10 minutes. The baking time may vary. So keep checking the cake after 40 to 45 minutes.
Pressure Cooker Method:
Grease the baking tin with oil and dust it by sprinkling whole wheat flour over greased surface evenly. Pour the mixture into the greased baking tin.
- Use the baking tin of 6 inches in diameter, so that it can easily get into the pressure cooker.
- Use a 5-liter pressure cooker. It should be big enough to hold the baking pan.
- Baking Tin should be made of Aluminium.
- If baking tin comes into direct contact with the base of the pressure cooker, it can burn ( overbake ) the cake. So use pressure cooker container which has big holes in it or any aluminum small stand.
- No gasket and whistle are needed. Remove them before baking.
- Don’t add water to the pressure cooker.
- Avoid baking without spreading salt at the bottom. Salt absorbs some heat from the extreme hot base and prevents overheating. I never used salt in my baking because I use a heavy bottom aluminum cooker and I am baking for the past 10 years in the same cooker. It works perfectly fine. But, it depends on the brand, quality of the pressure cooker. I use prestige 5 liters heavy bottom pressure cooker for baking.
How to Bake In A Pressure Cooker?
- Heat the pressure cooker on high heat for 8 minutes. Use sea salt or sand as a layer inside a cooker. Put a steel stand on a layer of salt or sand.
- Now put the cake tin containing the cake batter ( Do not put water inside the pressure cooker).
- Close the pressure cooker lid and do not put the whistle on the lid. Remove the gasket (rubber ring) from the lid.
- Lower the flame after 8 minutes. Let it bake for 50 -60 minutes on low flame. After 60 minutes check cake with a knife, if the mixture does not stick, it means the cake is done.
- If batter still sticks to knife then again bake for another 10 minutes. Do not open the lid immediately.
- Eggless Pressure Cooker Cake is ready.