Here is the Italian Plum bread or pane alle prugne. This is a wonderful quick bread to serve anytime, and also makes a lovely “sweet” to have at an afternoon tea.
Dust the top with confectioners’ sugar, and serve with tea or coffee.
If possible, try to buy the Italian purple prune plums; they are perfect for making this delightful dessert.
Serving: Makes two (9 x 5-inch) loaves
- 1 cup (2 sticks/8 oz/226g) butter or margarine, softened
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 3 cups all-purpose flour PLUS 2 extra tablespoons, for tossing with chopped plums
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. cream of tartar
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 3/4 cup plain, lemon or orange flavored yogurt
- 2 tsp. grated lemon or orange zest
- 2 cups (about 3 – 4 medium to large size), diced Italian prune plums (chopped into 1/2-inch pieces)
- 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
- 2 tbsp. Grand Marnier liqueur or other orange flavored liqueur (optional)
- Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting tops of loaves (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).
- With cooking spray, lightly spray two 9 x 5 x 2 1/2-inch loaf pans; line bottoms of pans with parchment paper. Lightly spray parchment paper also.
- Wash and dry the plums; chop into 1/2-inch pieces. Toss together to coat. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar and vanilla until fluffy.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Sift together flour, salt, cream of tartar and baking soda.
- Blend yogurt and orange zest (or lemon zest, if using); add to creamed mixture alternately with dry ingredients. Stir until well-blended.
- Add diced plums and nuts; mix well, add orange liqueur (optional).
- Divide batter between the 2 prepared loaf pans and bake at 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) for 50 to 55 minutes or until cake tester inserted in center of bread comes out clean.
- Remove loaves from oven; let cool in pans for 10 – 15 minutes, then invert loaves onto cooling rack, and let cool completely.
- When ready to serve, dust tops of loaves with confectioners’ sugar, if desired.