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Farm Fresh: Kuchen plum good eating for fall

Thursday, October 25, 2001

By Arlene Burnett, Post-Gazette Staff Writer

Autumn is the perfect season to serve kuchen. Kuchen is a generic German term for cake or coffee cake. Kuchens are pastries made with a dough or cake batter and fruit.

Our recipe today calls for Italian or prune plums. We couldn't find prune plums, so we used black plums. The Plum Kuchen turned out just right -- not too sweet but just sweet enough with a hint of cinnamon -- and the cake was moist and dense.

PLUM KUCHEN

1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 pounds Italian or prune plums, quartered
1 tablespoon lemon or lime juice
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch springform pan.

Cream together the butter and 1 cup of the sugar until well blended. Beat in eggs, followed by flour and baking powder. Beat to mix well and turn into the prepared pan. Place plum quarters on top of the batter, close together in circles starting at the outside, in a flower petal pattern. Sprinkle with lemon juice.

Mix cinnamon with remaining sugar and sprinkle over the top. Bake on center rack of the oven for one hour or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean and top is golden brown. Serve warm or cool, with unsweetened whipped cream, if desired.

Note: We substituted 5 black plums for the prune plums. We cut each plum in half, removed the pits and placed each half skin side up. Then we made 1/8-inch slices in each half. We continued on with the recipe.

Source: "Cooking With Fruit" by Rolce Redard Payne and Dorrit Speyer Senior

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