Dutch Apple cake

I had said, a (long) while ago, that I was never a fan of cinnamon (more like complete and utter dislike). So well, obviously, now I want cinnamon in everything these days. Including tea (do not raise your eyebrows. I know.)

I even started spending the time trying to powder cinnamon sticks, as I didn’t have any ground cinnamon to put in cakes. Seriously, why would a previously-NEVER-liked cinnamon girl keep ground cinnamon in her kitchen (Yes, I didn’t allow it to be stored.)?

I am not sure when the change came. Maybe the day I tried some cookies and something in me made me add the requisite cinnamon into it. The smell of cinnamon baking did it I think. I’ll tell you about those cookies someday.

There's something about apple and cinnamon that just goes together. Any apple recipe is incomplete without the flavour of cinnamon. And I was completely oblivious to this fact for years. I deliberately ignored mentions of cinnamon in any recipe (actually, I did not make any recipe that had cinnamon. That's it).

My first (uhh, no.Second) large scale party catering attempt (in all fairness I have to say, only dessert), I made Rachel Allen's (tried and tested) Dutch Apple Cake. And the recipe makes for a good every day cake and with the addition of ice-cream, an excellent party cake.

Dutch Apple Cake –

Adapted from the TV series Rachel Allen Bake! which is adapted from the book Bake : From Cookies To Casseroles, Fresh From The Oven.

You will need -

80 g butter
75 ml milk
125 g plain flour
150 gm caster sugar
Granulated sugar, for sprinkling
2 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
2 apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
Lots of Vanilla Ice cream, to serve.

To make the cake -

1. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line the sides and base of a cake tin with butter paper. Or butter the insides and flour it.
2. Melt the butter in a saucepan with the milk and leave it to cool slightly.

3. Using a hand blender, whisk the eggs, caster sugar and vanilla extract in a large bowl for about 5 minutes. The mixture almost doubles and reaches what Rachel Allen called the figure of eight stage – i.e. the batter will form hold a ‘figure of eight’ pattern, the mixture at this stage is airy, thick and mousse-like.

4. Pour the melted butter-milk mixture slowly into the egg mixture. Be sure to keep whisking as you add.

5.  Sift in the flour, cinnamon and baking powder and add it to the egg mixture. Fold carefully into the batter so that there are no lumps of flour.

6. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and smooth the surface to get an even top.

7. Arrange the apple slices over the batter. Now you can do this anyway you want. Add even shaped pieces on top or add apple dices. You can also add half the batter in the tin, arrange some pieces then add rest of the batter. Some pieces from top do sink to the bottom. Next  Sprinkle over a tablespoon of sugar to get a caramel crunch on top. Bake in the oven for 10 mins, and then reduce the oven temperature to 180Cand bake for a further 20–25 minutes, until well risen and golden brown.
8. Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool in the tin. Cut into squares and serve warm with Ice cream or even fresh cream.


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