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.

Notes:
* 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

Ingredients:
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.

Cheddar, Feta and Pimientos Baked Cheese Balls

The combination of cheddar cheese and pimientos is mostly known as the base for the tasty pimiento cheese spread, which was the inspiration for creating the following baked cheese balls. Continue reading

Beef Stew with Red Beans and Tomato Sauce


On a cold day, sometimes all that is needed is a straight-forward simple comfort food, without too much elaboration. The following stew is exactly that. Continue reading

White chocolate and Coffee Mousse

The following tasty white chocolate and coffee mousse, has only three ingredients in it, and is very easy to prepare. Continue reading

Sweet and Spicy Baked Sesame Tofu

The following tofu snacks will no doubt delight even hard core carnivores. Continue reading

Sweetened Condensed Milk Dough Cookies with Quince Paste

Ever since I’ve discovered sweetened condensed milk dough in this blog, I’ve been experimenting with it. I like the easiness of its preparation and of rolling it, and the fact that it keeps its shape well while baking. Continue reading

Jerusalemite Hamin – Overnight Chicken and Pasta Dish

“Hamin” is a dish that came to be in order to solve a religious practice. The Jewish laws of observing the Sabbath, the day of rest, forbid cooking during this day. In order to still have a warm meal during Shabbat, the solution was simple: place the food in the oven on Friday evening, and let it cook slowly overnight on very low heat, until needed. Continue reading

Pan Fried Haddock Fillets with Caramelized Mini Peppers

When I found a package of frozen wild caught haddock fillets at the store, I liked the fact that they were individually packed, and decided to buy it, not exactly having any special type of preparation in mind.
Haddock is a member of the cod family, and has a fairly firm texture and mild sweetish flavor. It can prepared in different ways, with the most popular is dipped in batter and deep fried. I wasn’t into that, and so decided to simply pan fry it with olive oil and butter. Continue reading

Hazelnut, Banana and Lemon Muffins

Hazelnuts are a favorite of mine, whether for baking or for savory dishes. Their earthy, somewhat sweetish flavor, and their creamy texture, elevate any dish they are added to. So, it was no wonder I ended up using them when I was preparing to bake some simple banana-lemon muffins, and wanted to give them an interesting twist. Continue reading

Orange Vegetables and Pineapple Soup

One of the best remedies for grey gloomy days, is to have a bowl of bright colored, velvety tasty warm soup. Continue reading

Eton Mess with Spiced Red Wine Syrup


Eton Mess is a simple British dessert, which is made with three ingredients: strawberries, whipped cream and meringue cookies. Over the years, many variations were created to this tasty dessert, all based on the same ingredients. Continue reading