Growing up in a metro city in India and attending a Catholic school, I was not a stranger to Christmas. The numerous bakeries around too, made it easier to relate Christmas with plum cakes.
Even though these fruitcakes were available mostly year-round, we were allowed to buy/eat them only once a year during Christmastime because they had eggs in them, and we were a no-eggs family except for the occasional cakes once or twice a year.
So I did wait longingly for Christmas to taste this absolutely delicious little piece of heaven. That’s what it felt like those days. The combination of fruits and nuts made the taste and texture worth drooling for.
Little did I know then that fast forward a couple of decades, I would be baking those jeweled treats myself.
My mom wanted me to make her this plum cake because she was not a fan of the store-bought ones with too much egg flavor. Even though I already have a vegan Christmas fruitcake recipe and an easy fruitcake with carrots recipe in the blog I wanted to try another version of the fruitcake, especially which was quite similar to the one which we used to get in India.
That’s when I found this recipe and I made some minor changes, and the result was stunning.
Hope you will try the recipe and love it as much as our family did.
Indian-Style Eggless Christmas Plum Cake Recipe
- PART 1: (to be soaked for at least 24 hours)
- 1/2 cup candied peel aka tutti frutti
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup orange juice, preferably freshly squeezed
- 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 and 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon allspice powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk (See My Notes)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup broken cashew nut pieces
- 4-6 tablespoons orange juice
- as needed orange zest
- Soak the ingredients listed under Part 1 for at least 24 hours.
- On the day of baking, preheat the oven to 350F/180C for 15 minutes. Lightly grease or line an 8″x4″ loaf tin with parchment paper and set aside.
- Sieve together the dry ingredients listed under Part 2 and set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter, condensed milk, and vanilla extract until light and creamy.
- Stir in the sifted flour mixture into the creamed butter mixture and mix until no flour is left.
- Now fold in the soaked fruit mixture, nuts, and orange zest mentioned in Part 4. Add orange juice little by little to get the desired batter consistency.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean.
- Remove the pan from the oven and leave it on a wire rack to cool completely. After a while, unmold the fruitcake from the pan.
- If you plan to brush the loaf with sugar syrup, poke the bread with a fork or wooden skewer, brush it with simple sugar syrup, and leave it for 10-15 minutes before slicing the cake.
- This Indian-style Christmas plum cake brought back my childhood memories of having a fruitcake during Christmas time in India. What I liked most about this fruitcake was that it did not have the eggy flavor and aroma like the one we used to get in the bakeries in India.
- The taste was perfect. Those with sweeter teeth than ours might need to increase the quantity of condensed milk or add some sugar while making this plum cake.
- If you are ok with using rum, soak the fruits in rum instead of orange juice.
- I have used allspice powder because it gives a similar taste and aroma to adding cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves separately. If you don’t have that in hand, add half a teaspoon each of ground cinnamon and nutmeg.