Sunday, April 5, 2015

Apples galore = time to bake an apple cake!

The apple tree is laden, and I'm stewing, dehydrating, and giving them away. I'm also cooking them into all sorts of yummy things.

Yesterday's effort was this lovely moist German (or Dutch?) apple cake, source unknown.

  • 500 gm apples (I used Granny Smith) Peel, core, slice thinly. (You can sprinkle lemon juice on stop them browning)
  • Mixed spice - a generous pinch and a bit more because it tastes good
  • 225 gm butter
  • 195 gm caster sugar
  • 6 eggs (you could possibly use 4 if that's all you have, and use milk or yogurt to make up the extra liquid - I'll try this next time and see how it goes)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 195 gm plain flour
  • ... mixed with 2 flat teaspoons baking powder
  • Salt - a pinch
  • Cinnamon - 1/2 teaspoon or more generous if you like
  • 75 gm ground almonds (I think walnuts would go well - or macadamias!)
  • an extra Tablespoon of caster sugar to sprinkle on top

Oven @ 160 Celsius
23cm circular cake tin (spring form works well, lined with baking paper)

Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl

  • Cream the softened butter and sugar
  • add vanilla
  • add eggs one at a time - beat well after each egg. 
  • After the 3rd egg,  add 1/2 the dry ingredients
  • after the 6th egg add the remainder of the dry ingredients.

Taste test if you're that way inclined and don't have problems eating raw egg!

Ladle 1/2 the batter into the lined tin, layer on 1/2 the apples.
Put the rest of the batter on top of the apple layer and cover with the remaining apple.

Lightly dust with cinnamon.

Put in the centre of the preheated oven for 1 hour, turn 1/2 way through if your oven cooks unevenly. At about one hour, sprinkle with the 1 Tablespoon caster sugar and cook for a further 15 or so minutes. I got distracted and it was at least another 1/2 hour. Thankfully I didn't have a charred disaster!


I've now tried the recipe with extra apple, 1 generous teaspoon cinnamon and 1 teaspoon nutmeg. It was delicious! I also want to try it with some finely chopped preserved ginger and cardamom instead of the nutmeg.

Terry McNeil (G+ profile here) suggested the following: try adding some citrus zest, either lemon or orange. You could replace a little of the liquid with a tablespoon or so of a liqueur like Calvados. Drizzle some caramel over the cake. If you're feeling adventuresome,, the tiniest bit of freshly minced rosemary is a nice addition or some dried fruit.

Thank you Terry! So many variations to try!