Thursday, 19 April 2007

Plum Cake Heresy

When it comes to food, most people have a certain conception of how things have to be. It's like any other kind of dogma you could easily start a fight about: Do you pour some olive oil in the water while cooking pasta or don't you? What's the right way to cut an onion? Should there be a law for or against rinsing meat? Some of your culinary beliefs might never get questioned at all, others will get shattered after the first contact with a truly inaugurated foodie.

However, I would have never imagined that my idea of the perfect plum cake could ever change. All people ate it that way, right? There simply is no other way, right? To my utter disbelief, my boyfriend wasn't quite convinced of the superior nature of my plum cake. In fact in his opinion, the one he always ate at his parents' place was exactly how a plum cake should be. Now my curiosity was sparked. Although being pressed hard, the only thing he stated was: It's a brown dough. Patiently asking my way through all sorts of possibilities - was it soft, was it crispy - we settled on some kind of shortcrust pastry. Alas, he couldn't tell me where the brown colour came from. So I decided to do some online recipe research and after a while came up with a recipe for Chocolate Plum Galette found on Food & Wine. I wasn't sure if using cocoa really would produce the right kind of "brown" but I had to try and he likes all things chocolate anyway.

I slightly increased the amount of cocoa for a really rich chocolate taste but lacking fresh rosemary as well as an organic orange I omitted both. Truth be told, this rosemary seemed to stray away from my idea of a plum cake just a bit too much... Maybe one day I'll try this rather unusual combination but this time I paired the plums with the trusted duo of rum and cinnamon. Apart from the fact that the carefully shaped rim of this free form tart collapsed while pre-baking, everything went well.

I freely admit that the beautiful combination of plums and chocolate caused me to reconsider my once firmly grounded beliefs. But of course, it was not in the least as my boyfriend had remembered his mom's plum tarts.

PS: Meanwhile, I've inquired about the mysterious plum cake and got the recipe. I'm looking forward to giving it a whirl very soon.


Anonymous said...

At first sight I thought you burnt your cake ;-)

Kiss from your little sister

Nora B. said...

Hi Eva, Gorgeous looking plum galette. This is the first time that I've come across a "galette", so I tried to look up what it means and came across this definition: "different types of round and flat crusty cakes".

Your creation looks delicious. Does it taste like a "tart" to you? What did your boyfriend think? Now that you are armed with the recipe from his mother (I admire your persistence!), I am looking forward to seeing how different it is from your idea of a plum cake.

Eva said...

He did like it but the whole thing clearly wasn't of such importance to him as it was to me...
It tasted like a tart but because of the pre-baking, dough and plums stayed rather seperated (bit strange, next time I'll leave that step out). On the second day, all the juices from the plums had seeped through the formerly crispy base which was even better in my opinion!

Eva said...

Dear little sister,
Kiss you back!