‘Tis a time of joy, celebration, togetherness, carols, presents and, above all, Christmas plum cakes and special delicacies. Although Christmas celebrations have been subdued in the past two years due to the pandemic, this year, Bengalis are all set to usher in the festive season with much joy, optimism and of course, their favorite Christmas delicacies.
While Bengaluru is a gateway to a variety of cuisines, from South Indian to intercontinental, it also has a number of nostalgic bakeries ready to serve up a variety of offerings for Christmas and New Year. If you want to ring in this Christmas and New Year with delicious, spicy and crunchy spreads of culinary delights, here are some top bakeries in Bengaluru that you must visit.
A café converted into a bakery and supermarket; Thom’s Bakery’s journey dates back to 1970, and so do their plum cakes. Narrowed down to December 2022, the bakery on Wheeler Road easily manages to make you believe that Christmas is here. With a mannequin Santa Claus oscillating in one corner with twinkling stars hanging from the ceiling, the bakery is decked out, reflecting the festive atmosphere.
Completing the picture is a wide spread of Thom’s Bakery’s signature plum cakes, a cake lover’s favorite. Soaked in rum and wine for three to four months, the bakery’s plum cake is one of their signature dishes with varying levels of dried fruit and plums, especially those sourced outside India. The bakery is serving its rich plum cake with ice cream.
In addition, the bakery is also famous for its Christmas cookies, including red velvet, salt, nan cuttai and seasonal gingerbread. The bakery’s famous “kalkals” (fried cookies flavored with a mix of spices) are served in two varieties: the usual salted, along with sweeter versions.
Other savory items from the bakery include blueberry muffins, chocolate donuts, fruit and nut muffins, and more. However, due to the growing demand for egg-free products, the bakery is distributing many savory products in this category.
In addition, customers prefer to make their own plum cakes when they choose non-alcoholic wine and traditional cake mixes to make their own DIY cakes!
All Saints Bakery
With Christmas here, the bakers at All Saints Bakery on Brigade Road have their hands full with their famous rich plum cake, a 50-year tradition. Although the bakery has been selling rich plum cake for decades now, this Christmas they have introduced new Mature Plum cakes. Rich in fruits and nuts, such as apricots, figs, plums, raisins, almonds, cashews and walnuts, the cake is made with raw materials soaked in rum and wine for six months. The mixture is then folded into a rich buttered batter. This seasonal cake is also packaged in a distinctive Christmas themed tin.
The bakery also offers ice cream-free plum cakes with ice cream and egg-free varieties made with a spice mix and fruit mix. The bakery is also serving its famous kalkal. It is also known for marzipan – colorful little sweets made from cashew paste and sugar.
Bakers have also sensed that many customers like ginger during this balmy winter season in Bengaluru. Therefore, they have introduced a wide range of ginger delicacies, including ginger biscuits. Other Christmas treats include Chicken Pie, Tandoori Chicken Sandwich, Chocolate Rum Cake, Vanilla/Chocolate Roll, Chicken Hot Dog and Almond Leaf. In addition, the bakery also offers baked biscuits, almond biscuits, butter biscuits, murukkus and laddoos, among other delicacies.
Albert Bakery located in Frazer Town began to rule the hearts of the people while the British ruled the city. They are known for their salty and fried snacks, but during the Christmas season, they add special items to the menu, including plum cakes, ribbon cakes, marble cakes, cookies and much more.
What sets their cakes apart from their competitors is that they are alcohol-free. The nuts used in the plum cake are not soaked in alcohol before being mixed into the batter; instead, they add a “special ingredient” to enhance the taste – a recipe that has been passed down for four generations.
In fact, the bakery allows you to design your own personalized plum cakes. Customers can mix the ingredients (fruits, plums and nuts) and soak them in alcohol and give them to the baker to prepare the cake.
(With contributions from Dona Sunny)