Cat Cora is ready for holiday treats. The Iron Chef America chef shared the recipe for her roasted plum shortcakes exclusively with Us Weekly, which she says are a dessert “near to my heart.” The sweet snack is inspired by the Food Network star’s childhood trips to see The Nutcracker.
“’The Sugar Plum Fairy’ was my favorite,” the Cat Cora’s Kitchen founder tells Us. “And plums always remind me of the holidays!”
Check out the full recipe below!
8 tbsp unsalted butter, plus more for the muffin tin
2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 large eggs
1 tsp finely grated orange zest
1¼ cups cake flour, plus more for the muffin tin
¹/³ cup finely ground yellow cornmeal
¼ tsp kosher salt ½ tsp baking powder
¹/³ cup fresh orange juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 lbs ripe but firm black, red or purple plums, halved, pitted and cut into ½-inch wedges
1½ cups packed light brown sugar
6 tbsp crème de cassis
1 pt vanilla gelato or ice cream, or ½ pt whipped heavy cream, for serving
1. Make the shortcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and position a rack in the middle. Butter and flour a 12-cup muffin tin or use paper liners. With an electric mixer, beat the butter and the confectioners’ sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the orange zest.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, cornmeal, salt and baking powder. In a cup, stir together the orange juice and vanilla. On low speed, add the dry ingredients to the butter-sugar mixture in three additions. Alternate with the orange juice mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Scrape down the side of the bowl as you go and mix just until the batter is smooth.
3. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin, filling each cup about three-quarters full. Bake until the cakes are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Let the cakes cool in the pan on a rack.
4. Make the filling: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a 9-inch by 13-inch glass baking dish, toss the plums with the brown sugar and the crème de cassis until the sugar begins to dissolve and the plum slices are evenly coated.
5. Spread the slices evenly in the dish and roast until the plums are very tender but still hold their shape, 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside to cool while you begin to assemble the dessert.
6. Cut each shortcake in half horizontally and set the bottom halves on small dessert plates. With a slotted spoon, transfer about 2 tbsp of the warm plum slices to each shortcake and spoon over a little of the juice from the baking dish. Cover with the shortcake tops and place a scoop of gelato or ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream on each shortcake and serve. Serves 12.
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