Pineapple, Coconut and Rum-Raisins Cakes

The following cakes will delight any fan of dense and moist fruit cakes, with an added bonus of tropical flavors and aroma of pineapple, coconut, rum and vanilla.
This “all in one bowl” type of cake is quick and easy to assemble. Baking time is a bit longer than usual for such cakes, and is done on somewhat lower temperature, as the batter is quite moist and needs more tender care.
While the cakes can be served as is, to make things more interesting, I drizzled one with pineapple glaze, while the other was topped with a thick crushed pineapple spread. Choose one or both – according to your liking, and enjoy.

* As I couldn’t get reasonable fresh pineapple, I opted for the next best option, of crushed pineapple in pineapple juice. However, if you have fresh ripe pineapple, you can definitely use it instead.

Makes: 2 loaf pans
Soaking time: 15 minutes
Prep time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 50 minutes
Cooking time for the topping: 5 minutes

¾ cup golden raisins
½ cup dark rum
1 stick (115 grams) butter, soft
1 cup dark brown sugar
½ cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla paste
2 L eggs
1½ cups crushed pineapple in pineapple juice, drained (see notes)
2 cups flour
1 Tbs baking powder
Dash salt
½ cup unsweetened desiccated coconut
For the toppings (optional):
Option 1: ½ cup crushed pineapple, ½ cup powdered sugar, 1 Tbs cornstarch mixed with 2 Tbs pineapple juice
Option 2: ½ cup powdered sugar, 1 tsp pineapple juice

1. Mix the raisins and rum in a small bowl, and let sit for 15 minutes at room temperature.
2. Brush two loaf pans with melted butter and dust with flour. Turn upside down, and tap to get rid of excess flour. Keep in the fridge until using.
3. Preheat the oven to 350F (175C).
4. In a large bowl, whisk together the butter, dark and white sugar, vanilla and eggs. Add the drained crushed pineapple and mix. Add the flour, baking powder, salt and coconut, and mix again. Mix in the raisins, and divide the batter between the two pans.

5. Bake for about 50 minutes, until the cakes are golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out almost dry (the cakes should be moist). Keep in the pan for 5 minutes before releasing onto a rack, to cool to room temperature.

6. The toppings: option 1: mix the crushed pineapple with the powdered sugar in a small pot and bring to the boil. Mix in the cornstarch slurry, and cook for 1 minute, until the glaze is thick and shiny. Spread over the cooled cake. Let set before cutting.

Option 2: mix the powdered sugar with the juice to a smooth glaze. Drizzle over the cooled cake. Let set before cutting.

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