Author Notes: The secret of this cake's success is a powerful combination of rich yet refreshing flavor and moist, smooth and feathery physique. For my American friends there is a major shocker – it features no chocolate whatsoever! If making for a party, be sure to bring a few recipe cards -- there will be inquiries, I guarantee it. —Eat Already!
pinch of salt
teaspoon baking soda
cups all-purpose flour, plus a bit more for rolling
pounds full fat sour cream
unsweetened prunes, pitted
cup red wine
lemon, zest and juice
teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt
cup walnuts, plus a bit more for decoration
- Soak prunes. Warm up red wine until hot, but do not boil. Pour it over prunes and set aside until needed.
- Make the dough. Use a double boiler or improvise by boiling water in a sauce pan and placing another sauce pan over it without touching the bottom of the lower pan.
- Combine first five dough ingredients in the upper sauce pan and whisk quickly over the boiling pan, just until butter and sugar dissolve.
- Remove from heat, add baking soda and whisk rapidly
- Add 2 cups of flour immediately and whisk vigorously until gooey batter forms.
- Fold the batter out on a well floured surface and continue adding flour in small quantities and working it into the batter until soft, sticky and stretchy dough is formed. Use dough cutter or wide blade knife to work the dough if necessary. As soon as the dough stops sticking to your hands, you are done.
- Divide the dough into 8 equal parts. Cover with plastic to prevent drying out.
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Start working with the dough immediately, this is not the kind of dough that does well in a fridge, saved until later. It’s best to use it up while it’s still warm to preserve its wonderful plasticity.
- Roll each portion of the dough on a well floured surface to a 1/8 to 1/4? thickness, shaping it into a circle or a square.
- Wrap the crust around a rolling pin and carefully transfer onto an un-greased baking sheet and unwrap, smoothing it out.
- Bake 3-4 minutes, until nicely golden, but not well browned. The crust will puff up lightly, little bubbles may form, this is normal. Fully baked crust will still be soft, not crunchy.
- Remove the crust onto a cooling rack or a board. Repeat with the remaining crusts.
- Prepare the filling: in a large bowl combine sour cream, sugar, lemon juice, vanilla and a pinch of salt and whisk them together just until sugar dissolves.
- Drain prunes, add wine to the filling and whisk until well incorporated.
- Chop prunes and walnuts coarsely (pea size or slightly smaller chunks). Add them to the filling and mix in with a spatula, until well incorporated.
- When crusts are completely cool, stack them neatly, cover with a round plate and using a serrated knife, cut off all the uneven edges. If making a square cake, cut straight sides. Reserve the cutoffs.
- Assembly: lay a crust onto a serving platter, put approximately 1/2 cup amount of filling onto a crust and spread evenly using a spatula or a slotted spoon. Repeat until all crusts and filling are done, finishing with the filling on top.
- Using a spatula, spread a bit of spill over filling around the sides of the cake.
- Place crust cutoffs and about 1/3 cup of walnuts into a processor and pulse, until fine crumbs form.
- Coat top and the sides of the cake evenly with the crumbs.
- Refrigerate cake at least 4 hours or overnight. It’s best to cover the cake with plastic to prevent drying.
- The cake is best when served cold (I just realized as I finished typing it, that it is revenge that’s best served cold, but may this unfortunate coincidence not stop you from doing the right thing)