Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Cinnamon Plum Torte

About this time two year ago I visited my in laws in Essex, and whilst there I stumbled across what I believed was a cherry tree.  This fruit was yellow with a red blush; they were very sweet and tasted like cherries, however they were a little larger, that made me question if they were really cherries.  Also the stems were different from the traditional cherries we see in the U.K.  So I am having some doubts as to whether they were something else.  So if anyone can help me it would be appreciated - see here.

This year I came back with some more foraged fruits from Prunus family.
But once again I am unsure what they exactly what kind of plum they are.  Those in my Growing and Gardening books, as well as the Internet are a deep purple colour.  These tasted like wild plums, just a little more sour.  They were also round.  I am guessing that these are Damson Plums, so much so that I have tentatively decided to call the recipe 'Damson' Plum Torte, but of course I may be completely wrong (I was) and some of you will be able to tell me for certain that these are just another plum.  Well I did tell some of you that I am still learning about foraging wild weeds and wild fruit and this foraging experience shows you that this is the case.  I would also like to thank you to those of you who responded to the photograph of the edible weed on this blog post

Updated: 14/07/2011: Thank you to Gardeningbren, Mark Willis and Little Black Fox who have identified these as cherry plums (mirabelles), not damsons. 
I brought these foraged fruits back up with me at the weekend and made this Cinnamon Damson Plum Torte with them.  I did chuckle to myself about the food miles.

Since coming back up to Scotland, we have been enjoying a slice of this Torte each day.  The last couple of slices will be enjoyed later today with a little whipped cream.
I know the Torte looks like its burnt - it is a little, as I left it in the oven about 8 minutes too long, but the bronze colouring is also contributed by the cinnamon sugar on top.  This fresh fruit dessert was a splendid change from a chocolate or dried fruit cake.  I especially liked how the batter rose, enveloping and bursting the red sharp fruit.

I am submitting this recipe to Rachel from The Crispy Cook for this week’s Weekend Herb Blogging (WHB) #292. WHB is overseen by Haalo from Cook Almost Anything.
Cinnamon Damson Cherry Plum Torte
Serves 6
100g butter, at room temperature
140g golden caster sugar
2 eggs
140g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
400g damsons or plums, pitted
1 tablespoon golden caster sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Preheat the oven to gas mark 4.
Lightly butter or oil a 9 inch round glass pie pan.
With an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs and beat for 1 minute. Add the flour, baking powder and salt and mix just until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Spoon the batter into he prepared pan and spread it evenly. Arrange the damson or plums onto the batter, have some cut side down, others cut side up pressing them in gently into the batter. Stir together the sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle it evenly over the torte. Bake for 35 - 405 minutes. The torte is ready when the top is lightly browned and the sides begin to pull away from the pan. Cool on a rack for 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy warm or at room temperature. Adapted from Moosewood Restaurant Celebrates.


  1. This sounds really fragrant and tasty. Thanks for sending it over to WHB this week!

  2. This looks delicious! I would hazard a guess that you have found cherry plums. (Google that and you should find what you are looking for.) I say this, because last year one ripened in our yard and we had no idea what it was and that was when I discovered cherry plums.

    They are just as easy to eat as cherries but I must say, I also made a jelly with cardamon and it was about the best jelly I ever made! Lucky you to find those fruit.

  3. Are Damsons ripe yet? I thought they would be ready in August. Have you ever found any "Bullaces" in the hedgerows? they are a type of wild plum, a bit like a Mirabelle.

  4. That looks amazing. I love the burnt parts, so it wouldn't bother me if it was burnt. Thanks so much for sharing!

  5. Thank you Rachel.

    Thanks Gardeningbren.
    I think you may be right.

    Your jelly with cardamon interests me, but i have to admit, I've been put off cardamon as my mother tended to use it in everything she cooked, okay I exaggerate, but you get my point. As we were leaving Esex, I noted loads of trees laden with ripe fruit. Shame my time was limited there this time.

    Thanks Mark.
    Excellent point, but I did also find some blackberries that were ripe as ripe can be and you don't get them unitl Autumn. I think you are right though, these may not Damsons (sadly), but saying that..August is only next month?!

    I've never found any "Bullaces" in the hedgerows. These were found hanging off a tree. So I still don't know for sure what a damson looks like, a mirabelle or a bullace - I have so much to learn about the wild fruit foragin and it will be creeping to the top of my list when we ever move down South. Thank you though - its always appreciated.

    Thanks Sarah.
    You certainly would have liked this, soft in the middle, biscuity on the outside.

  6. Love plums, this look delicious, gloria

  7. Beautiful cake!! I have two plum trees and I made a good jam with these fruits! sorry for my english....:-/

  8. Lovely! I can sit and eat that torte all by myself.

  9. This looks beyond amazing!!

  10. wow...sounds amazing..
    awesome space you have..
    glad I m following you already..
    you are welcome in my space..:)
    Tasty Appetite

  11. Hello!
    These are Mirabelle or Cherry plums, I have some in my garden (I have damsons too, but they won't be ripe until August). This is a lovely looking torte, I am horribly addicted to cinnamon sugar!
    It always amazes me when I visit my folks in the midlands, as their growing season is about 2 weeks ahead of North Lincolnshire. Right now they'll be harvesting ripe tomatoes & cucumbers, while I'm just getting my first little green fruits.
    Much love, my friend

  12. That looks really delicious Shaheen. Mmmmmmmmm :P

  13. That looks delicious. I love our winter, but must admit I am looking forward to summer fruits again.

  14. Thank you franci e vale.
    Your English is absolutly fine, so please don't apologise.

    Thanks Rosaria.

    Thanks Jess.

    Thanks Jay, for your comment and for choosing to follow. I will def. coem by and visit your space:)

  15. Thank you littleblackfox.
    You will have to show the damsons on your blog when they ripe, so this amateur can learn :)

    Yes I was surprised to see blackberries ready in parts of Essex whereas in Scotland they are ony just beginning to flower. I can't wait to move now for a number of reasons!

    Thanks Jacqueline.

    Thanks cityhippyfarmgirl.
    In 'Scotland, it always fels cold as its always raining, so the summer fruit is uplifting.

  16. these lovelies must be 0 calories! cos I can have a few slices of them without regrets hehe

  17. Hi Jean,
    I wish - tasty nonetheless.

  18. The recipe seems quite simple but I'm not sure if we can get those plums here. I suppose I could substitute them with some other fruit. Anything with cinnamon is tempting!!!

  19. Thanks Sumaiyyah.
    Ordinary plums will work well too and pears.

  20. love this tart! I was wondering if these were cherry plums until I read further - we had a cherry plum tree when I was little and we would eat them to our hearts content because it was huge - lots of cherry plums got mushed underfoot - and I remember them as very sweet because our were often quite ripe by the time we ate them - I sometimes think it would be nice to taste them again but haven't seen them in years


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