My first cake memory is my granny’s apple cake. They built their house in an apple orchard, so there was never a shortage of that particular childhood treat. The smell of warm crumbly cake fresh from the oven will always take me back to those days.
For the cake
90ml apple juice
215g spelt flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
300g golden caster sugar
175g butter, softened
2 medium eggs
750g eating apples, peeled, cored & cut into 1cm pieces
100g lightly toasted walnuts, broken into pieces
Put the sultanas into a small bowl & add 45ml of the apple juice & set aside for at least 3 hours.
Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas4. Grease & line a 23cm round, loose bottomed cake tin. Tie a thick band of brown paper around the outside of the tin so that it protrudes 7-8cm above the top of the tin. This will stop the cake from browning too much.
Place the flour, cornflour, baking powder, salt & ground spices in a large bowl. Add the sugar & butter & beat for about a minute, until we’ll mixed.
Add the eggs & mix for another minute until the mixture is light & fluffy. Beat in the remaining 45ml of apple juice.
Fold in the chopped apples, sultanas & walnuts. Spoon the mixture into the tin & level the surface.
Bake for 1 hour 25 minutes, until it’s firm to touch & a skewer pushed into the centre comes out clean. Cover the cake loosely with tinfoil once the cake is browned on top.
Cool the cake in its tin on a cooling rack.
For the Caramel drizzle
175g light soft brown sugar
300ml double cream
Stir all the ingredients together in a saucepan over a low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Turn up the heat & bubble for 2-3 minutes until the sauce is golden brown. Allow to cool before pouring over the cake.
**Top with Candied Walnuts ( see our recipe ) and for an extra special touch maybe even a splash of brandy whipped in with some creme fraiche. Be sure to add liquid slowly as it will easily split.
Serve & enjoy.
Our Tudor inspiration for this recipe
In “A Proper New Booke of Cookery” of 1545, there is a recipe which sounds like the predecessor of our much loved apple crumble.
To make an Appelmoise. Take a dozen apples and roast or boil them and draw them through a strainer and the yolks of 3 or 4 eggs withall. As ye strain them, temper them with 3 or 4 spoonfuls of damask water if ye will, then take and season it with sugar and half a dish of sweet butter. Boil them upon a chafingdish in a platter. Cast biskets or cinnamon and ginger upon them and so serve them forth.