Finally out of the Christmas cookie posts! And this week, I’ve got a great one, out of Ottolenghi’s new cookbook: Sweet. I have many of his cookbooks, and really have never gone wrong with his recipes. But I never would have known about him if not for my college roommate Cate, who spent the past couple of years in England. When I went out to visit her, she brought me to one of his restaurants, and later got me a cookbook.
This year I got to return the favor, since Ottolenghi released Sweet, his baking book, without Cate realizing it was coming out. Last weekend, when I was in DC visiting her and her partner, Jonathan, we tried a recipe for a brunch she was hosting: Rum and Raisin Cake.
The night before you want to make this cake, you’ll have to soak the raisins in rum. Other than that, it comes together quick!
Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and vanilla extract on medium speed until light and fluffy. If you don’t have a stand mixer, find a Jonathan who will beat it by hand. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat after each addition until smooth. Add the flour mixture in two parts, alternating with the sour cream. Beat well and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Stir in the rum-soaked raisins to distribute evenly. Spread batter into a greased 9×13 inch cake pan. Bake at 375°F for around 25 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely. When ready to serve, you’ll want to make the rum caramel icing. To do so, start by melting the butter in a saucepan on low heat. Add the brown sugar and cook for one minute, stirring constantly. Add the milk and increase the heat to bring it to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in the rum and confectioners sugar. Allow to cool to room temperature.
To serve, cut the cake into single-serve squares (you can interpret single-serve to your liking). Here’s Cate! Drizzle the icing over each square to serve.
Rum and Raisin Cake
- 1 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup dark rum
- 2 1/3 cups (300 g) flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup + 1 1/2 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 1/4 cups (240 g) light brown sugar, packed
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup sour cream
Rum Caramel Icing
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon (80 g) light brown sugar, packed
- 3 tablespoons whole milk
- 1 tablespoon dark rum
- 1 cup (120 g) confectioners sugar
- The night before, soak raisins in rum in a small airtight container.
- When ready to make the cake, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and vanilla extract on medium speed until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition.
- Beat in the flour mixture in two additions, alternating with the sour cream.
- Stir in the rum-soaked raisins.
- Spread batter into a greased 9×13 inch cake pan. Bake at 375°F for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely.
Rum Caramel Icing
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat.
- Add the brown sugar and cook for one minute, stirring constantly, until comes together.
- Add milk and increase the heat to bring to a boil.
- Remove from heat and whisk in rum and confectioners sugar. Set aside to cool completely.
- To serve, cut cake into squares and drizzle with icing.