Posts Tagged 'cake'

Eager anticipation

Untitled by rjknits
Untitled, a photo by rjknits on Flickr.

I’ve spent the day wrapping gifts and baking. So far, on the baking front:

  • Lucia buns
  • Jul konfekt
  • Toffee bars
  • Birthday cake for the Gardener
  • Blueberry sour cream coffeecake with pecans

… Apparently I need running shoes and an exercise program to survive Christmas, but I can’t wait. Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year.

mocha chocolate cake filling options

  • Apricot jam
  • Raspberry jam with coconut
  • Nutella

I have the mocha frosting for the outer frosting layer. But now, I’m stuck with decisions. Considering how rarely I get the chance to bake in the kitchen, this is a sweet problem to have.

And apricot jam was the winner.

Fig and Almond Kuchen

Fig and Almond Kuchen

Fig and Almond Kuchen

Note: this kuchen is based on Flo Braker’s recipe for Prune plum, fig and walnut kuchen. It isn’t the same, but it was a great springboard for what I came up with. I live in a household that seems to prefer almonds over walnuts. I suspect that I could have made this more like a frangipan tart by pouring in half the dough, adding a thin disc of marzipan, then pouring in the rest of the dough and adding the figs. As it is, this is possibly a little lighter than an actual kuchen (I subbed 2 eggs rather than 1 egg and 2 egg yolks, due to what I had).

Ingredients:

  • 12 fresh figs, stems removed and each fig quartered (this might work with dried. Have not tried it.)
  • 1 Cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 stick (about 4 oz) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 Cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 Cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 2/3 Cup slivered almonds

Topping:

  • 1 Tbspn white granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350-degrees and set rack in center of oven. Grease and flour a 9 x 2-inch round baking pan (I used a 9-inch round springform pan with great success) and insert a round of parchment paper in the bottom.

Mix the cake: Cream butter. Once butter is smooth, pour in white sugar then brown sugar in a steady stream. Continue beating until well-incorporated and slightly fluffy. Beat in eggs, then almond extract. If you want to, sift flour, salt and baking powder separately before adding. If you don’t want to, you can put half the flour in then mix the salt and baking powder in the mixing cup with the flour before adding in the rest. Add flour mixture slowly until it’s just combined.

Spread batter evenly in pan. Sprinkle almonds evenly over the batter.

Add figs, starting at edges of the pan, seed/flesh side up and skins against the batter, one next to the other in circles around the pan. After completing the circles, if any wedges remain, snugly fit them in where you can.

Topping: Combine sugar and spices in a small bowl and sprinkle it over the top of the fruit on the cake.

Bake for 60 minutes, until the portion of cake nearest the sides of the pan is puffy and golden brown and the center is set. (You will want to start checking after 55 minutes). If the center is liquid and soft, bake another 5 to 7 minutes. If it is firm and set, then remove it from the oven to a wire rack and set it aside to cool for about 1 hour.

Remove cake from pan (use a knife or spatula slowly around edge of cake to release the sides). Cover the cake with the wire cooling rack, invert the cake, life the pan then gently peel off and discard the paper liner. (Like I said — the second time I tried this I used the spring form pan and it was so much easier.) Place a serving plate on top of the cake and turn it right side up. Serve warm or at room temperature. (I’m storing my cake in the refrigerator, even though the original recipe said to store it at room temp under plastic wrap. I just live in a household with cat interference.)

Serves 12. (Yeah, right. I’d say this is closer to feeding 15.)

Different fruits might work with this recipe — slices of plum or fresh apricot. I’m thinking of making the next one then freezing it for Christmas, when I’ll be visiting family members without a fig tree.


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