Rustic French Honey Cake

September 14, 2011


Author Notes: Note: This cake is only slightly sweet. It is a cake that answers the age old question, “is it ok to put a slab of butter on my cake?” with a definitive yes. I find it great in the afternoon with an espresso and if it is a Saturday I might even attempt an armagnac, cognac or a sweet walnut liquor. If you just can’t help yourself you could add another 1/8 cup of honey.
The cake is good wrapped in plastic wrap for a couple of days. It was eaten over the course of 3 days here and, for me, only got better.
thirschfeld

Makes: 9 pieces

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rye flour
  • 1 cup unbleached cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup prunes, chopped
In This Recipe

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350? F. Grease an 8 X 8 inch square cake pan. A parchment square in the bottom might be a good idea if you think the cake will stick to your pan. Grease the parchment too.
  2. Sift the flours into a mixing bowl. Any large pieces of bran left in the strainer can be discarded. Add the baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and cloves.
  3. Add the eggs, honey, milk, and butter. Stir with a wooden spoon to combine. Add the prunes and stir to distribute them.
  4. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 35 minutes or until a cake tester poked into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
  5. Remove it from the oven and let it cool. Dust with powdered sugar if desired. Serve.

More Great Recipes:
Cake|Prune|Milk/Cream|Nutmeg|Clove|Honey|Serves a Crowd|Breakfast

Reviews (24) Questions (0)

24 Reviews

CHeeb August 22, 2018
Helen,this Gilds an already golden lily,but I sometimes soak my prunes in tea or coffee depending on mood. It totally changes a delicate honey cake,but is a nice change of pace. Make sure to drain off any tea or coffee before adding them to your batter.
 
Helen L. August 22, 2018
I did find this cake a bit dry. Baked in a 350F convection oven for 30'. I used very moist prunes but not soaked. I will though give it another go...
 
Stephanie B. September 28, 2018
Maybe try baking at 325 if you're using convection.
 
Darilyn S. January 29, 2018
Has anyone tried this with dates?
 
pelinulger January 15, 2018
Hi there... As far as I know, heating honey is not very healthy. They say that when heated over 113F, it produces dangerous and unhealthy substances. I used to use honey in my cake baters as well, but after reading this on several different articles, I replaced honey with maple or molasses... Just FYI.
 
Sílvia F. February 24, 2016
Hey pixels, I've tried a cake recipe based on this in my own blog!! It's yummy!! Thanks for sharing your awesome recipes. If you want to see mine, click here, please: https://thehappiestpixel.wordpress.com/2016/02/24/rustic-french-honey-cake/<br /><br />Love, thp
 
Lisa November 29, 2015
This is such an unexpectly delicious and exquisite cake. I never like spices in the cake. But this one is an exception. The spices subtled down with the combination of honey and plum. It has a sophisticated yet complex taste to it. I am not a cake maker. Yet I made this many time. I found Trader Joe's pumpkin spice to be very close to the spices used in this recipe, just adds more cinnamon. Thank you!
 
CHeeb November 29, 2015
Dear Tom, I adore cakes with prunes and often soften them in warm coffee before blending them into batter. Can't wait to try this on your honey cake recipe. No one can guess there is either coffee or prunes once gently mixed in.
 
Lisa September 11, 2015
Dud any one tried to skip cake flour and using AP flour instead?
 
rachelg October 1, 2014
I followed the recipe exactly (except I used pastry flour instead of cake - maybe that was the problem?) and it was super dry. Is there any way I can easily make it more moist? Should I add more honey? or switch the butter for olive oil? Or add more milk? Thanks!
 
Renee M. June 5, 2014
This looks delictios! I'm going to the store tomorrow and will stock up on needed ingredients. I am sure that this cake made as directed will be perfect. Obviously, subbing many ingredients doesn't work….I don't understand when people sub ingredients and then complain? You didn't follow the recipe and then want to gripe about the outcome… puzzled.
 
misslofox February 12, 2012
I made this cake for a brunch this morning and it was beyond delicious. I was a little worried about the comments that it would be dry, but I found it to be very moist. I didn't chop my prunes very small - maybe that helped? In any case, this recipe is definitely a keeper!
 
beijinggirl February 5, 2012
Just made this - used whole wheat flour, omitted the prunes and baked in flower cake molds. Beautiful!
 
Susan November 24, 2011
Exquisite! I subbed wheat flour for rye, and soaked the prunes in apple juice like Lillasyster suggested. It was so good I decided to forego the brownies I'd planned to make for a potluck and share this cake instead. Anything that can stand in for chocolate is of superior quality.
 
bklyncook October 5, 2011
mmm..added applesauce because i feared the "dry" factor....yum ...so easy...
 
drbabs September 28, 2011
Loved. I made the cake with whole wheat instead of rye flour--I didn't have any rye--and used the extra honey because I'm a wimp. It was very slightly dry, but that may have been my oven's fault--sometimes it runs hot, sometimes cold, and it was running a little hot today. We had it with cappuccino for dessert and loved it. Thanks for a great recipe.
 
Lillasyster September 28, 2011
A very nice cake. I used plain AP flour instead of rye, the extra blob of honey and soaked the prunes in apple juice. Results were plenty moist and not too sweet; thanks for the excellent recipe!
 
Regine September 22, 2011
More like a honey bread than cake since it just has a hint of sweetness even with the additional 2 tbsp of honey. Definitely good with butter or even cheese. I could see it cut in slices next to a plate with a nice selection of cheeses. I did not have rye flour nor do I like it, so I replaced the rye with the same quantity of all purpose flour. I also added about 1 tsp vanilla extract. Would I make it again? Yes. You could even up the honey from 1/2 cup to 3/4.
 
Brotha P. September 20, 2011
Oh, Man! I must make this, this very weekend and I will post my photo when mission is accomplished. :-)
 
Smallpeace September 20, 2011
What did I do wrong?! My honey cake was very dry. Arathi, I like the idea of steeping the prunes in armagnac, maybe that would help. But I do think this very un-sweet cake needs the added dusting of the confectioners. Frowny face.
 
Author Comment
thirschfeld September 20, 2011
Smallpeace, I have made the cake several times now and it has never been dry. It is not a particularly moist dense cake either though. Did you use 8 x 8 metal bakeware or some other bakeware? Did you use stone ground rye? Sometimes I find stone ground grain absorbs more moisture and needs a little more hydration. Also in the headnote you will notice it recommends for a sweeter cake to add up to an eighth of a cup more honey. Arathi's idea of steeping the prunes would be a great additon.
 
ashleychasesdinner September 18, 2011
I am loving honey lately, so I am off to make this. I have similar plates to the one you have in your photo! Love that plate. Mine are on their last leg, since they are old and have been passed around to so many through the years. Thanks for sharing the recipe thirschfeld!