a class act

by Sandra

Summertime. It’s been a great season, full of parties, movies, free Shakespeare at Barnsdale Park, and Rilo Kiley at the Greek Theater. One of my writing professors, Chris Meeks, had a reading of some of his new material at the Beverly Hills Library a few weeks ago, and he was so excited to see I had made it out—I was really humbled. Yep, the sun shines a little brighter and the music sounds a little better during these months full of long days. 

You’d think the heat of summer would make things like baking a bit improbable. However, it hasn’t actually been too hot lately, so I decided to take advantage of the coolness, and of the abundance of summer-ripe stone fruits and made a plum torte, originated by Marian Burros.

It is simple, delicious and ridiculously easy to make. The most time consuming step is halving the plums. This is one dessert that will out-class the rest of the food table at any summer picnic or b-b-q. The juice of the plums mixes in nicely with the dough, and the cinnamon sugar sprinkled liberally on top of the whole affair lends a sweetness that mellows out the tart of the fruit.

The result is a sweet, juicy and crumbly concoction that will be snapped up by your party guests very quickly. I ended up making three of these this past weekend, and would easily make a fourth, if I thought that the Trader Joe’s cashier wouldn’t give me a funny look for single-handedly depleting their stock of plums. I would imagine you could substitute out any sort of stone fruit in this recipe. Cherries, nectarines, peaches. Each one of those sound quite delectable. So onward summer.