sarahjane, Aug-29-10 13:29:53:|
As it happens, I stumbled across some information about Diantha's cake. It appears to be a very old German recipe called pflaumenkuchen (plum cake), passed down by both Jews and Christians. German Jews served it as a Rosh Hashanah dish.
The recipe has many variations: the "cake" can range from yeasted to more pastry-like, can be either round or rectangular, be with or without streusel topping, feature plums skin-side up or skin side down, and include such ingredients as vanilla, lemon zest, almond extract, apricot jam and even barley flour. What all versions share is a relatively simple, buttery base, with "Italian" "prune" plums pressed into the top.
I made it as a late summer birthday cake, and macerated the plums in brandy, sugar and cinnamon, and added a little lemon zest to the cake. When baked, I dusted the top with icing sugar and served with ice cream and leftover plums.