2 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/4 stick), plus more for coating the pan
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch fine salt
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
For the batter:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1/3 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (3/4 stick), at room temperature
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 pound (about 5 whole) plums, pitted and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
For the topping:
Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Coat an 8-by-8-inch baking dish with butter and set aside.
In a medium bowl, using a pastry blender or your fingertips, work the brown sugar, flour, measured butter, cinnamon, and salt until the ingredients come together but some pea-size pieces remain. Stir in the pecans, cover, and refrigerate until ready to use.
For the batter:
Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl until evenly combined; set aside. Whisk together the milk and vanilla extract in a small bowl until evenly combined; set aside.
Combine the sugar and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat on medium speed until light in color and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs 1 at a time, letting the first completely incorporate before adding the second.
Add a third of the flour mixture and mix on low until just combined; scrape down the sides of the bowl. Pour in half of the milk mixture and mix on low until just incorporated. Repeat, alternating dry and wet ingredients and ending with the dry ingredients, until completely incorporated.
Remove the bowl from the mixer, fold the plums in until coated and evenly distributed, and turn the batter into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the reserved topping evenly over the batter and bake until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean and the top is golden brown, about 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool at least 20 minutes before serving.
Beverage pairing:Jackson-Triggs Vidal Icewine, Ontario. Somehow Jackson-Triggs manages to pull off great ice wine at an incredibly reasonable price. Smelling of tropical fruit, mango, and peaches, the wine is very sweet, but perfectly balanced by potent acidity. This makes it a good match for the plums, which can often show the same characteristics.