Thursday, August 15, 2013

New York Times Plum Torte

My Wednesday night dinner pals still had not met the newest member of our family, sweet little Faye, so I hosted dinner to arrange a rendezvous.  She, of course, stole everyone’s heart and behaved quite nicely.

She is cute…but very frisky!

I made Chicken Marsala, but the hit of the evening was the plum torte that Foodie brought for dessert.  Apparently, it is the most searched and requested New York Times taste and you will understand why.

This recipe reminds me a lot of the pistachio apricot cake I made a little while ago….a no-frills cake that is gussied-up with plum halves then sprinkled with fairy dust (a cinnamon/ sugar mixture) before baking so that the oven can coax it’s caramelizing magic.  I love that word – magic – it reminds me of one of my favorite movies  ever, Sleepless in Seattle.

A few words about plums…they come in a panoply of colors and varieties and are a member of the prune family.  They are high in fiber, a natural antioxidant and help the body to absorb iron. They contain potassium, a mineral that helps manage high blood pressure and reduce stroke risk.  Studies also suggest that plums lower the risk of age-related macular degeneration.  Delicious and good for you!

Original Plum Torte
From:  New York Times
September 21, 2005

3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup unbleached flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
2 eggs
24 halves pitted purple plums
Sugar and cinnamon for topping.
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Cream sugar and butter in a bowl. Add flour, baking powder, salt and eggs, and beat well.

3. Spoon the batter into a spring form of 8, 9 or 10 inches. Place the plum halves skin side up on top of the batter. Sprinkle lightly with sugar, depending on the sweetness of the fruit. Sprinkle with about 1 teaspoon of cinnamon.

4. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Remove and cool; refrigerate or freeze if desired (but first, double-wrap the tortes in foil, place in a plastic bag, and seal). Or cool to lukewarm, and serve.

Heavenly..simply heavenly.  It's easy to make and a pretty dessert for a pot-luck or dinner party contribution.

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