We’ve been experimentating with different apple cake styles and recipes over the winter.
It’s been interesting, made the house smell wonderful and provided us with a great excuse to have the oven on, which has helped the log burner heat up the kitchen – win, win, win!
Here are the recipes for three of our favourites – all very different.
Recipe 1 –
Chunky Apple & Plum Loaf Cake.
We made it in a loaf tin… just for a change, but you could use a regular round tin if you prefer – use a 1Kg / 2Lb loaf tin or a 20 cm round tin lined with baking paper.
This recipe is adapted from one found in BBC Good Food Magazine.
We used Plum jam, so ours was an apple and plum cake, but consult with your almost empty jam jars then decide what you’re going to make –
250g / 9oz Self Raising Flour
175g / 6oz butter (I always use butter rather than spread in cakes & pastry as I think it tastes better)
175g / 6 oz Muscovado Sugar (or demerara, or white if you don’t have Muscovado)
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
3 Small Eating Apples – Peeled & cut into medium sized chunks
2 Large Eggs, Beaten
1 tsp Baking Powder
Jam & 2 x Rounded Tbs Demerara Sugar for top
1. Preheat oven to 170c or Gas 4. Line loaf or cake tin with baking paper.
2. Rub the flour, butter and muscovado sugar together to make fine breadcrumbs. Reserve 5 Tbs of this mixture and mix it with cinnamon and demerara sugar for topping. Set this reserved mixture aside.
3. Mix apple chunks and eggs.
4. Stir baking powder into rubbed in mixture, then quickly and lightly stir in the egg mixture – don’t over mix.
5. Spoon into the tin – if you have enough jam, you can dollop some jam in as you spoon cake mixture in.
6. Dollop rest of jam on the top – we made a little rut along the middle of our loaf cake, and put jam along the middle – good idea to keep it away from the sides of the tin as you don’t want the jam to burn
7. Spoon reserved crumble / sugar over the top, avoiding jam.
8. Bake in your preheated oven for 1 hour and 10 or 20 minutes – test with a skewer & it’s cooked when skewer comes out clean. Cover with foil after about 50 minutes.
9. Once cooked, leave in tin for around 30 minutes then cool on a wire rack (or eat hot!)
Recipe 2 – Apple Cake with Syrup.
This is a very different cake, made with semolina – higher in protein than flour. This cake has no added fat and the main sweetener is the maple syrup. There are different grades of ‘maple syrup’ sold, and as always you get what you pay for – genuine maple syrup has a low GI in contrast to cheaper varieties, which often contain a low element of maple syrup (therefore less taste) and often have a much higher GI. This is great with greek yougort or vanilla ice cream.
The recipe here was adapted from http://www.weighitup.com.au
Line a 20 – 22 cm cake tin, or make in a flapjack type tin – 32 x 22 cm, lined.
Heat oven to 180c or gas 4.
½ cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup water
½ cup quick oats
800g stewed Apples
½ cup flaked almonds – optional
1 cup water
¼ cup sugar
¾ cup Maple Syrup
1. Mix eggs and sugar with a whisk until light, creamy and thick.
2. Add some of the semolina, then some of the water and vanilla. Add the rest of the semolina, baking powder, water, vanilla and oats. Mix well.
3. Mix in apples.
4. Spread into tin. Sprinkle with almonds if using them.
5. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes if using a flapjack style tin, or longer if using a cake tin – it is ready when a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
6. Allow the cake to cool. Heat the syrup for a little while in a small saucepan – don’t let it burn, but do let it thicken a little. Then pour it over the cake – slowly so it soaks in.
Recipe 3 – Apple, Sunflower seed and Honey Cake.
Sunflower seeds are great little packets of goodness – they contain lots of vitamin E, which has been said to help to reduce cholsterol. They also contain a lot of magnesium, which is needed for strong healthy bones and also for regulating the flow of calcium to the blood vessels and muscles. They also contain selenium, which has been found in some studies to inhibit cancer cells… and the Vitamin E that they contain is claimed to help prevent UV damage to the skin by the sun.
We made this in a ring tin – one with a hole in the centre. We greased it well first, and it turned out wonderfully.
Preheat oven to 170c or Gas 5.
1 cup sunflower seeds.
1/4 cup Honey (heat your measuring cup first by pouring boiling water into it, and this will help honey to run out more cleanly)
1 cup sunflower oil
2 cups sugar
2 cups plain flour mixed with 1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt and 1 tsp ground cinnamon or nutmeg and 1 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups peeled, chopped apple – chop quite small.
Honey to pour over – use a spoon heated by pouring boiling water over it first to help.
1. Sprinkle some of the sunflower seeds into the greased tin.
2. Use an electric mixer to beat sugar, honey and oil.
3. Beat in eggs, one at a time, adding a little flour with the last couple if necessary.
4. Gently beat in rest of dry ingredients, then fold in vanilla, rest of sunflower seeds & apple.
5. Cook for 50 – 60 minutes. Cool in tin for about 10 minutes when taken out of oven.
6. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool, and very carefully pour over more honey – it helps this absorb better if you heat the honey gently in a pan first. You may want to prick the cake gently too, to help absorption.
Delicious served with vanilla ice cream, custard, creme fraiche or greek yogurt.
– Do you have any recipes that you’ve found to be family favourites?