Thursday, 10 December 2015

Norwegian Apple Cake (Eplekake)

I chose this cake recipe primarily to make a non-Christmas entry to this month's AlphaBakes challenge. The letter chosen is N, and Caroline, of Caroline Makes (who is this month's host, a duty she shares with Ros, of The More Than Occasional Baker) is graciously allowing entries where N = Noel, but would obviously like some more general entries too.

When consulting my baking books, I found that there were very few choices of ingredients beginning with N - nuts, nutmeg - and even fewer recipe names, especially once you ruled out Nutty as part of the title. Before resigning myself to going with nuts, I looked at the recipes from countries beginning with N, especially where the name of the country was used in the title of the dish; it didn't take long to find Norwegian apple cake. This recipe had the added bonuses of keeping my baking light in the approach to Christmas and using up some of my store of home-grown apples.

I used this recipe, which produced a cake small enough for two of us to eat quickly. Most of the online recipes are similar - some add a handful of raisins, or nuts, or make a bigger cake, but the differences are minor and go to prove that the basic recipe is authentic and tradional.

The cake is a vanilla flavoured sponge base with thin slices of cinnamon-sprinkled apples baked on top. It uses a slightly lower proportion of flour than a traditional British sponge cake recipe, and most recipes whisk melted butter and sugar together for the first step, as here, rather than creaming sugar with soft butter. These two steps make a more fluid batter than I'm used to, and I was worried that my springform pan would leak, so I changed to a ceramic baking dish at the last minute, which made a more shallow cake. I needed three of my small apples to get enough slices to cover the surface. Rather than sprinkling brown sugar and cinnamon over the surface of the cake, I tossed the apple slices in a sugar and cinnamon mixture before arranging them on the batter - I saw this in another version of the recipe and thought it a good idea, as it gets some of the cinnamon flavour into the batter mix, as it rises around the apple slices.

I thought this made a better dessert than a cake. When cold the sponge was moist but slightly too dense for my taste - it was best eaten warm, and would have been even better with cream or custard.  My apples were yellow-skinned; if I made it again, I think red-skinned apples would look prettier, but that's a minor quibble! It tasted good though - what's not to like about sweet apples mingled with vanilla and cinnamon?


Phil in the Kitchen said...

As you say, what's not to like? This is my idea of a very good dessert for this time of year.

Snowy said...

This my kind of cake/pudding. Am a cinnamon fan especially with apples, and it's a great recipe for this weather.

Caroline Cowe said...

That sounds delicious, especially served warm with custard! Thanks for sharing with Alphabakes and for making the effort to find a N recipe!