Upside-down prune and almond cake

This delicious dessert is an upside-down cake and frangipane fusion. Prunes are soaked in a sweet tea to soften and add flavour, before being covered with a frangipane batter, baked and turned out upside-down for a gorgeous presentation. The cake works well with different fruits too – try switching out the prunes with dried apricots or figs.

First published in 2021
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Ingredients

Metric

Imperial

Prunes

Frangipane

To serve

Equipment

  • 25cm loose bottom tart tin
  • Electric hand whisk, or stand mixer

Method

1

Boil a kettle and make a mug of strong black tea. Add the caster sugar to sweeten it. Pour the hot tea over the prunes and leave to stand until cold. This will soften and sweeten the prunes

2

Preheat an oven to 180ºC/gas mark 4 and line a 25cm tart case with baking paper

3

To make the frangipane, cream the sugar and butter together in a stand mixer (or by hand) until pale and smooth. Add the eggs one by one, mixing thoroughly in between each one. If the mixture looks like it is splitting, add a tablespoon of flour to bring it back together

4

Fold in the flour and ground almonds

5

Drain the prunes and lay them in the bottom of the lined tart case in a single layer. Spread the frangipane mix over the top of the prunes leaving no gaps. The tart can be cooked straight away but I find the end result better if the tart is rested at this stage in the fridge for 1-2 hours

6

Cook the tart in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour. Test it by putting a knife or cake tester into the middle of the tart; it should come out clean when the tart is ready

7

Leave the tart to cool for an hour before turning it out. Place a large chopping board or plate on top of the tart, then flip it carefully 

8

The tart can be served straight away or made the day before and gently reheated in a low oven. Serve with ice cream, crème fraiche, cream or custard

First published in 2021
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Cutting his teeth at London restaurants including Bao and Petersham Nurseries, over time Chris Shaw has developed a simple, seasonal approach to cooking which is now the focus of his menu at the Whitechapel Gallery’s Townsend.

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