An update on the traditional Spanish olive oil cake, this version gets a hint of the holidays with freshly diced apples and brandy-stewed, spiced prunes (which are just dehydrated plums, for anyone out there wrinkling his or her nose). Cinnamon and a bit of clove give this cake a festive flair. I substitute organic vegetable oil here and love this recipe for its simplicity, the cake's tender crumb, and delectable results.
1. Mix the oil and eggs with a whisk or beater until creamy. Add the sugar and vanilla and mix to combine.
2. In another bowl, mix together the flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Add to the egg mixture and mix well.
3. In a small saucepan, combine the prunes and cloves with enough brandy and orange juice to just cover, then gently heat on medium-low until the prunes are plump. Remove the cloves and drain excess liquid from the prunes, if necessary. Let cool; dice the prunes and add to mixture, along with the apples.
4. The cake batter will be stiff. Pour into a greased 12-cup Bundt cake pan and bake for 75 minutes at 350°F or until a toothpick comes out clean. Serve wedges with vanilla-infused whipped cream or good quality ice cream and garnish with clementine segments if you wish. Also lovely with fruit compote.