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Sweet & crunchy, something for everyone

We are just beginning to see the start of the harvest. Apples are hitting the market stands, carrots and beets are in abundance and it won’t be long before my absolute favourite winter green vegetable kale will be available.

Unfortunately, the arrival of these wonderful vegetable coincides with cooler weather and the start of the school year. We say goodbye to the carefree days of summer and we try to embrace a more hectic schedule with kids back in school.

As a Chef the change in season means using different cooking techniques. Braising, stewing and simmering soups; we are entering the season of comfort foods. We no longer dread the thought of turning on our oven to bake. This is the perfect recipe to get us back in our kitchens and warm up to the sweet smell of cinnamon.

This recipe is very simple to make. You may even attempt this recipe on a week night. Once the ingredients are measured out, hands on time is about 15 minutes. The most time consuming and difficult part is pitting the plums.
The cinnamon sugar mixture may seem like a lot but it is not. Aside from the 2 Tbsp of sugar in the base it is the only sugar in the recipe. Omitting the nut crumble will save you some time but it adds a nice crunch to the finished dessert. Serve this cake with vanilla ice cream. Once the cake is gone you will have enough nut crumble to enjoy with a few more bowls of ice cream.

I am normally an ‘anything chocolate” for dessert kind of girl but there is something about this plum cake that I absolutely love. Enjoy!

Plum Kuchen with Nut Crumble

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¾ cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 1 each egg, beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 ½ lb fresh prune plums
  • 4-5 Tbsp butter
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • ¼ cup sugar

Nut Crumble

  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup chopped nuts

Pre-heat oven to 425F.

Mix together flour, sugar and baking powder.

Rub in butter.

Combine water, egg and vanilla and add to flour mixture. Knead into dough, until just combined and press into butter flan pan. (or a glass lasagna pan)

Mix together cinnamon, cornstarch, sugar set aside. Cut and pit plums and place on dough cut side up. Dot with butter, sprinkle cornstarch mixture onto plums.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until dough under plums look golden brown.

Stir together dry ingredient.

Rub in butter.

Bake at 350F until golden, stirring every once in a while to crumble mixture. Bake for approximately
15 minutes. You do not want to over bake this mixture. It should be soft and chewy, not too crispy.

Chefs Kirstie Herbstreit and Jody O’Malley are both Red Seal certified chefs. Together they run the company YouCanCook2, specializing in interactive dinner parties. You can also find them cooking at Entertaining Elements in St. Jacobs,where they hold private dinners for eight people. To contact the chefs, visit theirwebsite www.youcancook2.com.

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