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Vegan Kerala Plum Cake

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Vegan Kerala Plum Cake is my take on the classic Kerala Christmas Cake. One of the best treats for those who do not eat eggs or want to enjoy the classic cake without alcohol.

Vegan Kerala Plum Cake decorated with icing sugar and some pink ribbon. Seen in the background are some Christmas decorations.

This Vegan Kerala Plum Cake is

  • Eggless
  • Alcohol-Free
  • Butter Free
  • Dairy Free
  • Made using Whole Wheat Flour
  • Super moist and flavourful.
  • Loaded with dried fruits and nuts
  • Use dark brown sugar instead of granulated white sugar

This fruit and nut cake does not require any special equipment like a hand blender or a cake mixer. All you need is a spatula or a spoon to mix the ingredients. That is another beauty of this Vegan Kerala Plum cake. Any beginner in cake making can easily make this cake.

Slices of Vegan Kerala Plum Cake served on a white rectangular plate. Seen in the background is the whole cake with some Christmas Decorations.
Slices of Vegan Kerala Plum Cake

Last-minute Christmas Cakes

This dried fruit-rich eggless cake is one of the last-minute cakes you would make for Christmas. Yes, It does not require soaking dried fruits for days or months. As we are using fresh orange juice it is best to just soak it overnight. 

However the cake matures with age, so the cake would taste better the next day or two instead of the same day. One can eat the cake the same day, but I would advise giving it at least a few hours.

Eggless, Butterless, and Dairy-Free 

Typically this Kerala Christmas cake is made by soaking the dried fruits in alcohol and is enriched with eggs and butter. I have soaked the dried fruits in this special holiday cake with orange juice. I have not used eggs or butter. It is dairy-free too and does not use any milk products.

This Vegan Kerala Plum cake does not have the typical alcoholic flavor associated with it, but it tastes so good. It is light and fresh and bursting with festive flavors. Nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger add depth of flavor. Enjoy this with a hot cup of coffee or some comforting hot chocolate or just as is.

I made this cake, especially for my kids. My son loves Christmas cakes and because it has alcohol he does not eat them. So I made this and he is all happy about it.

Eggless and Dairy Free Kerala Plum Christmas Cake on a white plate with some pink ribbon on the side and some Christmas decorations seen in background.
Vegan Kerala Plum Cake

Genoa Cake or Alchohol fed Classic Christmas Cake

If you are looking for a classic Christmas cake or Genoa Cake that is soaked in alcohol check out this Whole Wheat Classic Christmas Cake or Genoa Cake Recipe of mine. It is a cake I have been baking for the last 3 years for Christmas, and every year the quantity of baking this cake increases. One of my most awaited holiday bakes. My husband and friends wait for this every year and it is a must for my Annual Christmas Party.

Christmas Cake or Festive Cake Ideas

I have another simple cake or this Eggless Whole Wheat Lemon Tutti Frutti Cake we all as kids in India love eating. I have just tweaked it a little bit by adding some lemon flavor to it. Another favorite cake of mine or my reader’s favorite is this Lemon cake without any baking powder or baking soda or this Egg-Less, Sugar-Less, Butter-Less Dates & Walnut Cake which is processed sugar-free and is butterless and eggless.

And If I have to bake something really quick or at the last minute, I bake this easy Easy Eggless Rava Cake (Semolina Cake). A one-bowl cake recipe that can be baked in 30 minutes. 

Slice of Vegan Kerala Plum Cake served on a small plate. Seen in the background is the whole cake with some Christmas Decorations.
Slice of Vegan Kerala Plum Cake

Ingredients and Substitutions for Vegan Kerala Plum Cake

Whole Wheat flour 

Cakes are generally baked using all-purpose flour/Maida/Plain flour or cake flour. I use Whole wheat flour for my bakes 99 percent of the time. One can however replace this with all-purpose flour/Maida/Plain flour or cake flour. If you are replacing it with Self-raising flour you would need to adjust the leavening agents, as the flour already has.

Dried Fruits and nuts

I have used a mix of Raisins, black currants, dried papaya, lemon peels, hazelnuts, and cashew. One can add prunes, dates, figs, etc. Nuts like almonds, pecan, and walnut can be added or replaced too.

Orange Juice and Orange Zest

I have used fresh orange juice squeezed from 1 big orange and the zest of 1 orange. You can replace it with alcohol if you prefer or even soak it in black tea. Zest adds a unique taste to the cake. 

Spices and flavorings

I have used cinnamon powder, clove, nutmeg, salt, and ginger powder. Vanilla essence is just added, but one can skip it if required.

Dark Brown sugar

Dark brown sugar adds a nice earthy flavor to your cakes. Also, I do not use white sugar, so it is either brown sugar or demerara sugar. One can replace it with granulated white sugar.

Caramel Syrup

It is made using dark brown sugar and water.  Again dark brown sugar helps in giving the much-needed taste.

Oil 

I have used vegetable oil in this eggless Kerala plum cake. One can replace it with any flavorless oil or even with butter.

Leavening agents

Baking powder and baking soda are used as Leavening agents which helps the cake give a good rise.

Ingredients for Eggless and Dairy-Free Kerala Christmas Cake arranged on a pink board with some Christmas decorations on the side.
Ingredients for Eggless Kerala Christmas Cake.

Baking Tins and Time required to bake a cake

I am using a round 6-inch baking tin. It took me around 1 hour to bake this cake. I wanted height in my cake, so I used a small round tin. One can make this cake in an 8-inch cake, individual muffin molds, or even in square or rectangular tins.

When baking a cake in a bigger size cake tin than the recipe mentions, the baking time may reduce as the batter is spread out. 

Kerala Plum Cupcake or Muffin

Similarly, if you are using the same recipe to make a cupcake or muffin size the baking time is generally 20-25 minutes.

Shelf life of the Eggless Kerala Plum Cake

This will stay good for a month in the refrigerator. 

Can this be stored in the freezer?

One can store it in the freezer for 5-6 months. Just slice and store in individual portions. When required, defrost and warm it a bit and enjoy. 

Kerala Plum Cake in a pressure cooker or Kadai/wok

Yes, this cake can be baked in a pressure cooker or Kadai/wok. Follow the procedure in the recipe for Eggless Chocolate Cooker Cake, on how to bake a cake in a cooker. The baking time would be 10-15 minutes more. 

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Vegan Kerala Plum Cake decorated with icing sugar and some pink ribbon. Seen in the background are some Christmas decorations.
Vegan Kerala Plum Cake
Vegan Kerala Plum Cake decorated with icing sugar and some pink ribbon. Seen in the background are some Christmas decorations.

Vegan Kerala Plum Cake

Vegan Kerala Plum Cake is one of the last-minute Christmas cake ideas, and is alcohol-free and dairy-free, loaded with dried fruits and nuts.
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Cakes, Christmas, Festival Special Recipes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Resting Time: 1 day
Author: Renu Agrawal-Dongre

Ingredients

Dry Fruits, Nuts and Soaking Ingredients

    A mix of Dry Fruits and Nuts – 1.5 cups (One can use up to 1 Cup, I have used a bit more)

    • ¼ Cup – Raisins
    • ¼ Cup – Black Currants
    • ¼ Cup – Mixed Peel
    • ¼ Cup – Dried Papaya
    • ¼ Cup – Chopped Hazelnut
    • ¼ Cup – Chopped Almonds
    • 1/2 Cup Orange Juice
    • 1 tbsp Orange Zest (1 orange Zest)

    Dry Ingredients

    • Flour – 1 cup
    • Baking Powder – 1 tsp
    • Baking Soda – 1/2 tsp
    • ¼ tsp Salt
    • 1/2 tsp Cinnamon Powder
    • 1/4 tsp Cloves powder
    • 1/4 tsp Dry Ginger Powder
    • 1/4 tsp Nutmeg Powder
    • ½ Cup Dark brown Sugar

    Wet Ingredients

    • ½ Cup – Water
    • 1 tsp – Vanilla Essence – 1 tsp
    • ¼ Cup – Vegetable Oil

    Caramel Syrup Ingredients

    • 1/4 cup Dark Brown Sugar
    • 1/2 cup Hot water

    Optional Ingredients

    • 8-10 Cashew or almonds for garnish

    Instructions

    Soaking of Dry Fruits

    • In a large bowl add in all the nuts and give a quick mix.
      ¼ Cup – Raisins, ¼ Cup – Black Currants, ¼ Cup – Mixed Peel, ¼ Cup – Chopped Hazelnut, ¼ Cup – Chopped Almonds, ¼ Cup – Dried Papaya
    • To this add orange juice and mix.
      1/2 Cup Orange Juice
    • Cover and let the nuts hydrate in the juice for 1 day a minimum of 24 hours.

    Preparing of Caramel

    • Before baking the cake, make the caramel syrup.
    • Warm ½ Cup water required for caramel in a pot.
      1/2 cup Hot water
    • In another heavy bottom, pot add sugar.
      1/4 cup Dark Brown Sugar
    • On low flame let the sugar melt.
    • Do not stir the sugar, it should melt on its own.
    • Once melted add the hot water slowly.
    • Be careful as when you add hot water to sugar it might splatter.
    • Mix everything and let the mixture simmer for 2-3 minutes.
    • Switch off and let it cool.
      Caramel Sauce.

    Preparing of Cake batter

    • Grease a 6-inch baking round pan or pan of your choice.
    • Preheat the oven to 170 Deg C / 338 Deg F.
    • In a large bowl sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon powder, clove powder, nutmeg, and dry ginger powder.
      Flour – 1 cup, Baking Powder – 1 tsp, Baking Soda – 1/2 tsp, ¼ tsp Salt, 1/2 tsp Cinnamon Powder, 1/4 tsp Cloves powder, 1/4 tsp Nutmeg Powder, 1/4 tsp Dry Ginger Powder
      Dry Ingredients.
    • Keep it aside.
    • Grate the orange zest in the nut mixture.
      1 tbsp Orange Zest (1 orange Zest)
    • Give the soaked nut mixture a nice mix.
    • To this add 2-3 tablespoons of flour and mix it evenly so that the nuts are coated with flour.
      Flour added to soaked nuts and dried fruits.
    • In another large bowl, add the oil and vanilla essence.
      ¼ Cup – Vegetable Oil, 1 tsp – Vanilla Essence – 1 tsp
    • To this add sugar and mix.
      ½ Cup Dark brown Sugar
    • Add the cooled caramel mixture and mix everything.
    • Slowly add the flour in batches and give a nice mix.
      Dry ingredients mixed with wet.
    • Add soaked nuts and water to make a smooth batter.
      ½ Cup – Water
    • Add the batter in a prepared cake tin.
    • Gently tap it and level the top.
    • Garnish or decorate it with nuts and dry fruits.
      8-10 Cashew or almonds for garnish

    Baking

    • Bake in a preheated oven at 170 Deg C / 338 Deg F for 45-60 minutes or until done.
    • The cake is done when a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
      Baked Kerala Plum cake.
    • Remove and let it cool completely before slicing.
    • It is best to cut a nut cake the next day.

    Video

    Notes

    • Standard US Size cups and spoons were used. 1 cup = 237 ml, 1 teaspoon = 5 ml
    • All ovens are different, please check if the cake is done after 45 minutes.
    • If the cake gets too brown on the top, cover it with aluminium foil and bake.
    • Water can be replaced with milk if required. Vegans can use vegan milk.
    • Oil can be replaced with butter. Vegans can use vegan butter.
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