I managed to extract the recipe by a mixture of much sincere flattery and gentle persuasion, a wow for an autumn party and so easy to make.
Serves 10 — 12
225g (8oz) sugar
150ml (5fl ozs) water
450g (1lb) plums
5½oz (150g) soft butter
6oz (175g) sugar
3 eggs, free-range and organic
7oz (200g) self-raising flour
1 x 25.5cm (10 inch) sauté pan or a cast iron frying pan
Preheat oven to 160C/325F/gas mark 3.
Put the sugar and water into the pan. Stir over a medium heat until the sugar dissolves, then cook without stirring until the sugar caramelises to a rich golden brown.
Meanwhile halve and stone the plums, arrange cut side down in a single layer over the caramel.
Put the butter, sugar and flour into the bowl of a food processor. Whizz for a second or two, add the eggs and stop as soon as the mixture comes together. Spoon over the plums and spread gently in as even a layer as possible.
Bake in the preheated oven for approximately one hour. The centre should be firm to the touch and the edges slightly shrunk from the sides of the pan. Allow to rest in the pan for 4-5 minutes before turning out. Serve with crème fraiche or softly whipped cream.