Out With The Old and In With The New | Plum Cake with Cinnamon Walnut Crumble

The first blog post at the beginning of the calendar year usually warrants some sort of reflection of the previous year’s events. Typical and boring I know, but that’s exactly what I am going to do here. I had every intention on composing a post on the 1st of January to bring in 2011, but with such a crazy start to the year coupled with procrastination and sheer laziness, I haven’t managed to put my thoughts to webpage until now. Oops.

So, 2010. How would I describe the year that has just passed us? The best singular word I can think of is “interesting”! In the last twelve months:

- I had four different jobs

- I travelled overseas to the US for a whole month by myself (and had the most brilliant time)

- I fell madly in love with a boy, but then he broke my heart

- I started this blog and quite enjoyed channeling my inner nerdburger in the process of creating it

- I said goodbye to years of hard earned savings as a deposit for an apartment in Melbourne. I don’t want a mortgage, but I know it’s time to be a grown up

- I made some amazing new friends, but also had to reluctantly let a few friendships go too…

There is no way to summarise my whole year in a few short sentences, especially since so much can happen in 365 days, but in essence, my peaks were amazingly high and my troughs were devastatingly low. At the end of it all, I managed to learn a lot about myself and I discovered the sheer strength of self-belief and to have faith to know that no matter how unpredictable and shit life can get, “it always works out”. No matter what happens, I’ll always manage to get through it.

So now, to two thousand and eleven. We’re only two and a half weeks into the year, and so far it’s been go, go, go! I’ve been working a lot, but also having lots of fun balancing work with play and luckily the social calendar this summer has been out of control and I am having a grand old time, with even more to look forward to in the weeks to come. I’ve also had a few very welcome surprises in regards to my career in the last fortnight too! I can’t share exactly what it involves as things are still very undefined at the moment, but hopefully in a month or so, I’ll have some good news to announce ;)

With the rest of the year to come, I’m not going to hope and wish for a great year, because I already know that it is going to be awesome. How do I know that? Because I’m going to make it a brilliant year. Yes, it’s inevitable that there will be some low moments as that’s just life, but focusing on the positives will really be the key. I am determined to try as many new things as I can; instead of saying “no” or “I can’t”, it’s going to be “yep, let’s do it!”, I’m going to work hard to find my dream job; I hope to explore more of this world through travel, and heck, I might even fall in love and subsequently get my heart broken again, who knows? Life is all about the unexpected, but also living it up as best we can, so let’s just go for the ride and take it as it comes. As a friend always says to me, “it always works out” :)

Thanks for memories 2010 and cheers to more in 2011! Here’s a wicked plum cake with too much crumble topping to celebrate the beginning of a fabulous year!

Plum Cake with Cinnamon Walnut Crumble

150g self-raising flour, sifted

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

60g caster sugar

1 egg, beaten

60ml milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

100g butter, melted

4 plums, halved and stoned

Crumble

50g plain flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

40g caster sugar

40g butter, chilled and cubed

30g walnuts, finely chopped

1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a round 20cm springform cake tin with non stick paper. Set aside.

2. In a bowl, combine the flour and sugar. Mix to combine. Pour in all liquid ingredients and stir until well combined.

3. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared tin and arrange the plums over the batter. Press them down slightly so it sticks.

4. To make the crumble, place all ingredients into a large bowl. Using your fingertips, rub the butter into the dry ingredients until you get some pea-sized knobbly bits. Scatter the crumble over the prepared cake.

5. Bake for around 35 minutes, or until the cake is golden and a skewer inserted comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool inside the tin for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Serves 8.

[Print recipe]

show hide 16 comments

jess

you are a gem.
this is beautifully written. i adore your respect for and appreciation of the ways things always balance out in the end. wonderful.

You can never have to much crumble. This looks absolutely great! I love plums but never have baked with them yet.

Here’s to an awesome 2011! All the best!

2010 sounded like a big year for you! Good to see you taking such an awesome attitude about this upcoming year. (And such a delicious-looking recipe.)

Vicki

Loved your post. You have a healthy sense of who you are and where you want to go and the sheer confidence to take you there.
And love your plum cake — it looks so yummy! I can’t wait to try it. Unfortunately, plums aren’t available yet in California.

Your photographs always look so beautiful. I love the slivers of plum in this one. Happy 2011!

jenna

I’ve been waiting for your new post….Happy 2011 to you also. Really enjoy your writing….keep it coming!

I love every word you just said. Sure, sh*t happens but things will always work out in a matter of time. All the best and may I just say, that’s a lovely cake you’ve made!

T from DC, USA

This thoughtful, happy and hopeful post that made me smile. You write very well. The plum photos are amazing; I can’t stop looking at them. And though we are strangers, I wish you all the best for a wonderful and happy 2011. Sounds like you’re off to a fabulous start.

Robyn

Glad to see you back in action , I’ve also been waiting for your new post, and look forward to a year full of blogs….

Susan

Happy 2011, hope you have a fantastic year …… lots of fun, success and blogging…. love the cinnamon plum crumble YUM

Linda

Thank you Jess. I never used to have faith that things eventually will work out, but I certainly do now!

Phuoc, cheers! You MUST bake with plums. They are beautiful, especially when they are tart.

Jackie, 2010 was big! :) To 2011 with a smile and determination!

Vicki, please do try this recipe when plums are in season. It’s great!

Leaf, Jenna, Hannah, T, Robyn and Susan – gracias :)

Everything is so beautiful – the cake, the photos, the text. Lovely.
2010 was a pretty bad year professionally speaking, so I’m hoping things get better in 2011.

This cake look scrumptious. I wish I had a piece right now!

I love crumbles! Whether on bars, loads pr cakes they always a lot of fun to make and delicious to eat. I haven’t made a crumble cake yet but this looks really really good, when plums are in season again I’ll be sure to try it; thanks for the great recipe!

*breads, loaves, or cakes

Caitlin

That looks so lovely and I really would like to bake this but.. but how the heck do i convert this to cups/tbsps? I’m not very sophisticated. ha thank you

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