Plum cake, pineapple coconut ice cream and other July Fourth treats to make this weekend

No matter if you’re celebrating Independence Day this weekend, next weekend or all next week, you’re going to need some sweets to go with your celebration.

Fresh pineapple and shredded coconut are in this bright yellow ice cream. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

I’ve been making a bunch of ice creams for a story coming out on July Fourth, but I wanted to share one of my favorites a little earlier. Below, you’ll read why I grew up eating a pineapple coconut soft serve and how to make a similar treat at home.

In the face of triple-digit heat, I’ve also been baking a little because I love summer fruits, such as peaches, blackberries and blueberries, in baked goods.

This plum cake is from a recipe recently published in Milk Street Kitchen magazine. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

The Austrian plum cake recipe (which you’ll find below the pineapple ice cream recipe) is a recent discovery in Milk Street Kitchen. The European-style cake was a little on the dry side, but when I thought of it like a sugar cookie, it made more sense. One coworker thought it would have been improved with some almond flour or allspice. “Something to give it a hint more complexity,” he wrote.

I’m inclined to back off the baking time a minute or two and serve with powdered sugar on top, but even without any changes, it’s a gorgeous cake that shows off those beautiful summer plums.

RELATED: How to make no-churn blueberry, Confetti cake ice creams

With fresh strawberries and vanilla, this French butter cake is dreamy

If you like the Dole Whip at Disney World, you’ll love this pineapple coconut ice cream. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

Pineapple and Coconut Ice Cream

If you’ve ever been to Disney World and tried a Dole Whip, you already know what this ice cream tastes like. I grew up eating Pineapple Whip, a Springfield, Mo., soft serve specialty that predates Disney’s Dole Whip by about a decade and is credited with saving the local county fair. A traditional dairy-free Pineapple or Dole Whip is made by freezing about 1 pound of pineapple chunks and blending them with a little pineapple and lemon juice, as well as about 1/2 cup coconut milk and only a tablespoon or two of sugar.

This French recipe is more of a traditional ice cream, where the pureed fruit and coconut mixture is mixed with whipped cream before churning in a machine. I preferred straining the fruit-and-coconut puree for a smoother ice cream; some of the coconut lovers I served this to liked the little chunks of pineapple and coconut in an earlier batch, so it’s up to you.

This version has quite a bit of sugar, so use the frozen pineapple and coconut milk method if you want a less sweet dessert. It also makes a lot of ice cream; you could cut this recipe in half, but I would use the same amount of coconut for the full effect. For even more coconut flavor, skip the heavy cream. Instead, chill a can of coconut milk and whip the coconut fat that solidifies at the top and fold into the pineapple puree before freezing.

If you don’t have an ice cream maker, place the pineapple mixture in a metal bowl in the freezer. When it has hardened a little, remove from the freezer and whisk in the whipped cream. Return to the freezer until it has hardened slightly, then whisk again. Repeat this once or twice until the mixture is too hard to whisk. Store in a covered container in the freezer.

— Addie Broyles

1 (2-pound) ripe pineapple
1 cup sugar
Juice of 2 oranges
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup shredded coconut plus 1 tablespoon extra, for garnishing
1 cup heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks

Peel and trim the pineapple. Cut it into quarters and remove the hard core. Cut the flesh into cubes. In a food processor, blend the pineapple, sugar, orange juice, lemon juice and coconut to a puree. Strain, if desired.

Transfer the mixture to an ice cream maker. Churn until the mixture begins to harden, then add the whipped cream and churn until the ice cream is firm. Transfer to a container, cover and store in the freezer. Serves 6 to 8.

— Adapted from “So French, So Sweet” by Gabriel Gaté (Hardie Grant, $19.99)

Fresh plums are a beautiful addition to any cake or cobbler. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

Austrian Plum Cake

1 cup all purpose flour, plus more for coating the pan
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
8 tablespoons salted butter, cut into 8 pieces, room temperature
1 large egg, plus 1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 pounds ripe but firm medium plums, pitted and halved, cut into 3/4-inch wedges
Powdered sugar, to serve

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Coat the bottom of a springform pan with cooking spray and then dust with flour. (You can also use a cake pan.)

In the bowl of a stand mixer or large bowl, whisk together the flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder and salt until combined. Add the butter, one piece at a time. You can leave the mixer running if using a stand mixer. Combine until the mixture resembles moist sand, about 2 to 3 minutes total. Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla. Beat on medium high until the mixture is pale and fluffy, about 1 minute. Scrape down the bowl, as needed.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread in an even layer. Place the wedges on their side on the top of the batter. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. Bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes, then remove the outside ring of the springform pan. Serve warm or at room temperature, dusted with powdered sugar.

— Adapted from a recipe in the July-August issue of Milk Street Kitchen

 


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