lou's luscious apple cake
This is wonderfully simple to make, I have never known it to fail and believe me I make it often. It is an ideal introduction to baking and to encourage newbies or nervous cooks there are hints and explanations throughout the recipe to help you. It is so delicious that you will wonder where it's been all your life. The original recipe is from a book I've had hanging around for at least 15 years and has been adjusted slowly over time to reach perfection in this version right here. Go on, try it.
Food processor/cake mixer
20cm/8" deep springform cake tin 1
2 large eggs, beaten
225g/8oz soft brown sugar
pinch mixed spice
pinch ground natural vanilla
225g/8oz self-raising flour
1½ tsp baking powder
350g/12oz cooking3 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
tbsp ground almonds
25g/1oz flaked almonds
Preheat the oven to 160ºC/GMº3. Grease and flour the cake tin.4
Place the butter, eggs, mixed spice, ground vanilla, flour and baking powder in a bowl and beat thoroughly until well combined. Use a mixer or food-processor.
Spread half the mixture in the bottom of the tin. Cover with the sliced apples. Sprinkle the ground almonds over the apples. Drop the rest of the mixture on top of the apples in blobs5. Sprinkle with the flaked almonds.
Bake for about 90 minutes, until evenly golden and edges are starting to shrink away from the tin.
Turn out and cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes before serving.
It's most definitely the kind of cake to serve warm with cream or ice-cream and a spoon. Don't try to pick up a slice and eat it, unless you really want to get cake down your shirt.
- A springform cake tin has a catch on the side which unfastens, making it easy to get the cake out once cooked. It is important that you use a deep cake tin, as the cake will rise to about 10cm when cooked. If you use a shallower tin than that you will be spending the rest of the day scraping burnt cake off the bottom of the oven.
- Don't use butter straight from the fridge. Leave it out to reach room temperature before using or if you are in a hurry, chop it into cubes and put it in the microwave on defrost for 30 seconds.
- Some eating apples work too, just make sure they are a juicy variety like Golden Delicious rather than a hard crunchy type like Granny Smith.
- To do this, dab your fingers in butter or use a piece of kitchen towel, and spread the butter around the inside of the tin to leave a fine coating. Then add a generous tablespoon of flour to the tin and shake the tin until all the butter is covered with a thin layer of flour, shake any excess off et voilà!
- Don't be tempted to spread it out. First, it won't work and second, it's not necessary. I know it looks like there can't possibly be enough, but the mixture rises an astonishing amount and will cover the apples perfectly. Trust me.