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It was my lovely cousin’s birthday last week and I decided to make her a cake. I’m not much of a baker, to be honest. I leave that to the fabulous Emily!

I have savoury-leaning taste buds, which is why all my favourite cakes are vegetable or fruit based: banana bread, carrot cake…

A few years ago I did a Jude Blereau cooking class at the Prahran Market. We made an awesome apple cake, which has remained in my thoughts ever since. I decided that I would make it for C’s birthday cake.

I love Blereau’s recipes, as I’ve mentioned before. The only issue is that they usually contain a few tricky-to-find wholefood ingredients. In this case, the challenging ingredient was barley flour. This was not to be located anywhere, including the local healthfood supermarket.

I therefore substituted the barley flour with wholemeal spelt flour, and reduced the quantity of baking powder (on Emily’s advice).

The cake turned out pretty well. The tartness of the apples and lemon contrasted beautifully with the sweetness of the mixture. The walnuts also added a lovely textural crunch. However, it was very crumbly. I’m not sure how that can be fixed! Nonetheless, the cake was a winner and it was enjoyed by all. I served it with some labne mixed with bush honey.

Ingredients

5 medium apples (I used granny smith)

1 lemon, zested and juiced

1 cup of oatmeal (I ground some muesli in a food processor)

1 cup of wholemeal spelt flour

1.5 tsp baking powder

200g muscavado sugar

3 eggs

120g unsalted butter, melted and cooled

100ml milk

1tsp natural vanilla extract

2 tsp ground cinnamon

A handful of walnuts, roughly chopped

  • Preheat the oven to 150°C (fan forced, less if otherwise). Grease a springform cake tin and line it with baking paper.
  • Peel, quarter, core and slice the apples. Toss immediately in a bowl with the lemon juice and zest to stop them browning. (This takes a while. Suggest you employ a kitchenhand.)

sliced-apples

  • Combine the oatmeal, flour and baking powder in a separate bowl.
  • Beat the sugar and the eggs until creamy. Slowly pour in the melted butter and flour. (Mine curdled at this point – so annoying!! Perhaps that was why the texture was so crumbly?)
  • Stand the batter for 10 minutes. Gradually add the milk and vanilla to create a thinnish batter.

apple-cake-mixture

  • Ladle one third of the cake batter into the tin. Top it with a layer of apples. Do this two more times so that there is a layer of apple on top.
  • Combine the walnuts and cinnamon and sprinkle over the top.

apple-cake-construction

  • Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until cooked.
  • Take out of the oven and leave to cool for 15 minutes before removing from tin.

Enjoy!

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5 Responses to “Apple cake: delicious and (somewhat) nutritious!”

  1. Emily says:

    Looks so good!

    I think to combat any crumbley-ness some more liquid is needed. Am thinking maybe 2 tbs of yoghurt or sour cream? You could probably use apple juice as well, but perhaps slightly less liquid.

    I bet this was delicious warm….

  2. Saskia says:

    So interesting. Maybe more milk needed to be added? I had a small suspicion that the mixture was too thick. Substituting flours can be tricky…

  3. Hannah says:

    I don’t know what this says about me, but as soon as I saw the lead photo I thought “that looks more appealing to me than any chocolate cake ever could”. Then I saw oatmeal, and muscovado sugar, and the deal was done.

    Also, crumbly? Bring it on. Shall be perfect over my oatmeal in the morning with a spoon of almond butter. 🙂

  4. Saskia says:

    Thanks Hannah! I def think this is a close rival to chocolate cake! I think I might make it again and try to perfect it…

  5. Annabelle Wilson says:

    Hey Sas,
    I made this cake last night and it worked really well, I didn’t quite have all the exact ingredients so I had to just make do with brown sugar rather than the muscavado sugar so the end result was not as deliciously golden brown as yours but it still tasted nice! I made it for my running coach and he really liked it and I think I will definitely have to make it again. Interestingly though, I must admit I was being a little lazy not letting the butter cool before I added it to the mixture but it didnt curdle at all.. I’m not sure if this was because of this or maybe because I used different sugar but it was interesting!
    Love, Annabelle

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