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Jul 13, 2007 10:08 AM

Really good, ultra simple summer fruit cake (2 years later)

My hat's off to Sir Gawain, who two years ago shared his easy recipe for a yummy summer fruit cake. I made it yesterday, using fresh blueberries and local apricots. It's so easy - two bowls, one pan, one spatula. I dried the berries before putting them on top. It was wonderful this morning for breakfast also...

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  1. How funny -- I was just thinking of that cake, and plan on making it this weekend for a potluck brunch!

    1. Sounds great! Very similar to a peach upside down cake I make.
      When serving, do you invert it twice to present it with the fruit on top?

      1 Reply
      1. re: laurendlewis

        Yes, I inverted twice...AND, it all stayed together! It helped that I had buttered the pan, lined it with parchment and buttered again.

      2. Wow! Great minds think alike! I received a huge bag of plums, and searched on chowhound and found that recipe and made it using plums! Its delicious, I'm definitely making it again. I even forwarded teh recipe to my friends.

        5 Replies
        1. re: LisaN

          Quick question... would this recipe still work if I cut back on the sugar to maybe 1/2 cup and used 1/2 whole wheat flour and 1/2 regular flour? I know it would turn out less sweet which is fine but just wanted to see what your thoughts were if it would "ruin" the texture/general recipe? Thanks... I have a TON of plums and this sounds like a great way to use them.

          1. re: burbankfoodie

            I made it with part wwpastry flour, part AP flour and it was great. don't recall details enough to know if i would cut back on sugar...

            1. re: burbankfoodie

              I've made Sir Gawain's cake successfully with less sugar/carbs. Here's my version:
              4 T butter, room temp
              2 T veg. oil (I was also trying to reduce cholesterol)
              ½ cup sugar; plus 1-2 tsp. for sprinkling
              2 tsp stevia
              1 tsp vanilla extract
              1 large egg
              1/2 cup milk
              ½ cup all-purpose flour
              ½ cup whole wheat flour
              ½ cup almond meal
              1 1/2 tsp baking powder
              1/2 tsp salt
              2 cups fruit tossed with ½ tsp ginger powder and ½ tsp nutmeg.

              It's still one heck of a fruity cake but the crumb is denser and a teensy bit "wheaty" tasting. If you're used to that taste/texture from eating more whole grain foods, I think you'll like it.

              Interestingly, I can make a good lower carb version of Sir Gawain's cake, but my attempts at making a lower carb version of the similar-but-different galleygirl's "pear tart" lower carb haven't been as good.

            2. re: LisaN

              I posted a picture of the cake I made on Flickr. you can see it here:

              1. re: LisaN

                Thank you, LisaN-- that photo got me out of this chair this morning--I mixed the batter, dumped a package of (unthawed) frozen blueberries on top, baked as directed--what a fine cake I have!

            3. Work with peaches? Same recipe?

              1 Reply
              1. re: itryalot

                I'm sure using peaches would be wonderful - peel them first, though! We bought a few too many peaches this weekend, and I'm eying them with a thought to making another cake with peaches and blueberries (I really love fresh summer blueberries!). Let us know how it turns out!

              2. Thanks for bringing this recipe up again! I made this tonight using sweet cherries (pitted and halved) and peeled, sliced, super-ripe nectarines. The cake itself is REALLY buttery and rich- I almost wonder if the butter could be cut back just a little (like 1-2 TB) without significant loss. Anyway, I'm usually a disaster with baking, so this was a pleasant surprise :).

                Changes I made:

                -I reduced the sugar by 1/4 cup (typically cut back sugar in recipes, plus the fruit itself was really sweet).

                -I baked this in an 8-inch round pan. Took an extra 10 minutes to cook through. Bottom layer is slightly crumbly but still fairly moist. Top layer with fruit is nice and sticky.

                -I crammed a LOT of fruit into this cake- 2 large nectarines and probably about 1 cup cherry halves. I didn't stick it deep into the batter, but probably the top 1/3-1/2 of the pan is mostly fruit with just enough batter to adhere it as part of the cake. We'll see how the cake holds up with all of the juicy fruits incorporated.

                3 Replies
                1. re: 4Snisl

                  Hi, just checking back in. I made last night for my husband's birthday (last minute thing) - with lots of plums on top. I augmented the sugar also - decreased to 3/4 cup and actually could probably reduce a little bit more if the fruit on top is sweet and ripe. Was very tasty! Since it was for that day, I wasn't feel gutsy to try things out but I think next time I make it, I'll now for adverturous enough to try using half whole wheat/ half white flour and see how that goes. Great, easy cake definitely a keeper!

                  1. re: 4Snisl

                    Next-day report- the cake held up nicely overnight. Sliced well (the fruit really did meld right into the cake, especially the thinner slices) , moist crumb without being pasty-moist, and not a crumb was left when I brought it into work. I think I'm going to make another one this weekend as a thank-you offering!

                    1. re: 4Snisl

                      I made this cake yesterday with blueberries and served it to some very happy dinner guests. It was the first time I'd made it and was struck by how similar it was to a cake-y sort of blueberry muffin. I pulled out a recipe I had taken from Glamour magazine about 20 years ago for what was, they claimed (who knows?), the blueberry muffins from Jordan Marsh.* Sure enough the recipes were nearly identical. Exact same ingredients, exact same technique, just a bit more of each ingredient in the Glamour version. I know Sir Gawain said he got the recipe from MS Living. I wonder where they got it?

                      None of which is meant as criticism of anyone in anyway. I just thought it was an interesting little note. The cake was simple and delicious.

                      *An old Boston department store that used to have a bakery counter and was known for its wonderful blueberry muffins.