Kerala Plum Cake {Non-Alcoholic}

A Kerala style plum cake with all the goodness, despite being non-alchoholic…




When the month of December arrives, it is always as though there is a waft of freshly baked goods in the air. I do agree it is festive season for many in this month, but apart from that, the nip in the air sends very comforting vibes into ourselves and that gets magnified by the soul comforting and heart warming bakes that can get done without any hassles, thanks to the climate. I love to bake, but multiple reasons which include my children’s general disinterest towards my bakes and my weight increase has somehow limited my baking to a very large extend. I think the most amount of baking I did was when I went to visit my sister in US. I had literally baked my heart out, I could say… Even though it was summer, the weather is so comfortable that you don’t feel that hot even with a heated oven on. While my sister kept saying that it was hot, she was surprised to see that I actually loved the feeling. Hehe…


For the past few years,  I have been participating in Valli’s Bake-a-thon. It wasn’t meant to happen this year, however thanks to the interest that she received, she decided to let the series happen. Believe me, I am really happy that it is happening. I had already plans in my mind as to what theme I wanted to do, but when she replied in negative, my spirits sunk and I didn’t bake what was meant to cover up the posts for the month. As I stand now, I am almost done with my baking and still have a couple more, which I am hoping that I can complete and schedule up on the post before my days get busier this month, InShaAllah…


Did I say “theme” earlier? Let me leave you to guess the theme over the next 3 posts and maybe by then you will get an idea. 😉 Meanwhile, I will start with this recipe for this year’s version. I am also participating in the November month Shh Cooking Secretly Challenge which had the theme of Xmas Bakes. I was teamed with Preeti, with whom I am coordinating for the first time. She blogs at Cakes & Curries and has a beautiful space with lovely vegetarian recipes. I have a soft corner for halwas and her Moong Dal Halwa looks absolutely delish. Her secret ingredients for me was cloves and dried papaya, while mine for her was dry ginger and molasses – do check out what she made with these interesting pair of ingredients.


I am really not a plan of fruit cakes but my girls seem to prefer it over other cakes, especially when it is home made. Last year, I had posted the eggless version, which was such a hit with everyone who had it. Naturally my next step was to try the Kerala style plum cake. Whether it is the local bakeries or the supermarkets. the aisles would be flooded with this cake. This cake is typically stuffed with bites of glace cherries and is dense in texture. Even though there is no plum being used in this recipe, I have no clue why this cake is called so. Hehe… Usually the fruits and nuts for the cake is soaked for months in some form of alcohol, but I have soaked it in Earl Grey tea. This tea gives a lovely flavor and aroma dimension, but you can use regular brewed tea or juices like orange or apple. I feel that the spices used in this cake align well with the taste of tea.




5 from 13 votes

Kerala Plum Cake {Non-Alcoholic}

Course Cakes and Muffins
Cuisine Kerala
Prep Time 12 hours
Cook Time 2 hours
Servings 8
Author Rafeeda AR



  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup chopped dates
  • 1/4 cup glace cherries
  • 1/4 cup dried papaya
  • 1/4 cup cashews
  • 1/4 cup almonds
  • 1 cup brewed and cooled Earl Grey tea or any tea of choice


  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • A pinch of salt


  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • A pinch of salt
  • 150 gm butter softened
  • 3 eggs seperated
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried ginger powder
  • 1/4 tsp clove powder


  • Combine all the fruits and nuts together and soak them in cooled Earl Grey overnight.
  • Prepare caramel with the sugar and water till amber in color on low flame. Allow to cool completely. This will give 1/2 cup of caramel, roughly.
  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Grease and flour a large loaf pan and set aside.
  • Seive together the flour, baking soda and salt into a bowl. Whisk in the sugar.
  • In a mixing bowl, beat the butter till soft. Add the egg yolks and combine.
  • Add the caramel, vanilla and spices and beat.
  • Add in the dry ingredients and the soaked fruits and nuts along with all the liquid and fold in. The batter will be thick.
  • In a clean bowl with a clean whisk, whip the egg whites till soft peaks.
  • Add into the batter and fold in till no white specks are to be seen. Make sure not to break the nuts too much.
  • Pour into the prepared pan and bake for around 50-60 minutes till skewer comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool in the pan for around 10 minutes when the sides come off, and then flip on to the cooling rack.
  • Let cool completely before slicing and serving.


I have soaked my fruits and nuts in Earl Grey tea for a different flavor. You can use regular black tea or orange/apple jucie for soaking, however make sure not to oversoak in juices as it may turn bitter. 
You can mix and match the fruits and nuts, though the cherries and the cashews are a given.



Join the Conversation

  1. 5 stars
    Thats a gorgeous looking cake. It must have been a delight to eat it. I keep planning to make it every year…your cake is tempting me to go for it now!

  2. 5 stars
    Wow Rafeeda this plum cake looks stunning!…I am so glad we are having bakeathon, another chance to enjoy all your baked treats!

    1. 5 stars
      Kerala Plum Cake looks yummy . Loved the addition of caramel to the cake. It definitely intensifies the flavor. You are right, Earl Grey sounds better than regular tea to soak fruits.

  3. 5 stars
    Such a lovely bake Rafeeda. I love the caramel flavour of Kerala Plum Cake, so different from the usual Christmas Fruit Cakes. I think I’ll bake one at home this time round as your recipe is so easy to follow.

  4. 5 stars
    Amazing bake as usual! You rock with flavors and love this beautiful and delicious cake! Just fedex me a loaf please:-)

  5. 5 stars
    Caramel flavored Plum Cake sounds so delightful! Love how beautifully your cake has turned out with perfect color and texture.

  6. I love Kerela Plum Cakes and this bake looks super delicious. I never saw a version where fruits and nuts are soaked in tea and would definitely try this version.

  7. 5 stars
    Kerala Plum Cake looks so yummy Rafeeda. The addition of caramel to the cake is totally droolicious, must be enhancing the flavor.

  8. 5 stars
    Lovely bake Rafeeda, the crumb looks perfect with all the fruits and nuts in it. Delicious and yummy.

  9. 5 stars
    The cake reminds me of the slices of cake that we get in Calicut bakeries. Used to love those, Will try this and I am sure it will taste exactly like those.

  10. 5 stars
    Awesome bake Rafeeda. I love plum cakes and also love the flavour of earl gray tea. So I can imagine the taste and flavour of this delicious plum cake. Always used green tea, black tea caramel etc to soak the fruits. Soaking in earl gray tea is a great idea.

  11. 5 stars
    Kerala plum cake looks too delicious and loves the texture. Christmas is never complete without the plum cake and you have baked it perfect.

  12. 5 stars
    Non alcoholic Kerala plum cake looks stunning. I love non boozy cakes. Perfect cake to celebrate this festive season. Cake had a lovely texture.

  13. 5 stars
    perfect texture, colour and presentation Rafee !! wish I could partake some of that lovely Kerala Plum cake !

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