With all the plums at the market, the 'plum talk' over at Fine Cooking and most importantly, after my first succes with the NYT plum torte, I decided to give Dorie Greenspan's dimply plum cake a try.
I bought Mrs. Greenspan's book online, even though I never bought a book from this author before and hadn't tried any of her recipes before (at least that I remember). But when you don't have access to fine bookstores with loads and loads of the last cooking and baking books you could ever wish for, that make you think you'd like nothing better than spend the rest of your week doing nothing but inhaling those books, you get desperate. And you let your best intentions of not buying a book that you're not sure you'll definately like and use a lot (and even the tiniest bit of certainty will do) just fly out the window. Just like that.
I started out strong and just read about the book ('Baking, from my home to yours') thinking it would not be anything I need. Neeeeeed need. Not. But the rave reviews kept coming. And then those rave reviews became really mean to me when people started adding pictures. And more rave reviews. And more people telling the world no baker would ever be the same after baking from this book. It was a given, this book should grace the shelves of every self-respecting baker. And I am. And I caved.
I loved it. I loved the pictures, I loved how many recipes it had, and loved the author's writing style. So I started baking after wading through 8 zillion posts about which goods were definately out of this world great. I baked a cake. It was toothachingly sweet to me. I baked cookies. They were toothachingly sweet as well. I maked something else I can't even remember and didn't like it one bit. And I yelled at myself for buying something unseen again. And everybody still thought the recipes weren't overly sweet at all.
I mentioned the plum talk before, and it included the recipe for Dimply plum cake from this book. And I gave it another go. It was dead easy to make. I only tweaked a little, out of necessity. I didn't have an orange to zest, so I subbed the vanilla extract with Grand Marnier in the hope of bringing some orange flavor in (which I love). I decreased the sugar by 20%, just to be careful. And I added some streusel because I loved that with the last experiment too. Okay, now having written that down, it seems more tweaking than I thought, but, it really wasn't awful ;o). And this is the result:
It looks great. The house smelled divine. I did not like it :o(. I thought the cake texture wasn't as light as the NYT torte, which was feathery. This wasn't. There was no orange taste (my bad, I admit), but what I did taste was the sugar. Again, too much for my likes. So I think I've got to give up on this book. I only need to find someone who will appreciate it, because lots of people do and I'm obviously in the minority. And I will definately have to make a new resolution and keep it this time when it comes to ordering books on the internet...