Saturday, June 21, 2014

Fresh Apple Cake

Fresh Apple Cake has become a family favourite since I first found the recipe in a magazine back in 2006. It's a Paula Deen recipe, and can be found in her book Paula Deen Celebrates!

I usually make this cake in the Fall, as it feels like a seasonal cake to me. But, Dad requested it for Father's Day, so I made one. I then made one for my oldest brother and his family, since we were driving up to North Carolina to see them this past week. It was well received in both instances.

The cake has a good, if sometimes crumbly, texture. Even tho it crumbles, it is a moist cake. It is spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg, and has nuts and raisins in it. I use more raisins than the recipe calls for! I sometimes use walnuts, even though the recipe calls for pecans. The pan gets coated with cinnamon and sugar, but I also like to add decorative sugars to the coating to make the cake look more festive and fun! Like most recipes, I encourage people to play with it a little bit. Think about things that might work in the recipe and adjust to your taste.

So, here's the recipe, according to Paula Deen...

pan coating: 3 Tbsp sugar & 1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
3 cups chopped Granny Smith apples, peeled (about 3 medium apples)
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup raisins or coconut

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees
2. Generously grease a 10-inch tube pan. Combine the sugar and cinnamon and coat the inside of the pan with the mixture by shaking the pan all around until the sides and bottom are coated.
3. Beat the oil and sugar with an electric mixer until well blended. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
4. With a spatula, stir in the apples and vanilla.
5. Sift together the cinnamon, nutmeg, flour, baking soda, and salt. Add the mixture to the apple mixture and mix well with a spatula.
6. Add the pecans and raisins. The batter will be very thick.
7. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
8. Lift the pan from the counter about 2 inches and drop it back down to get out all of the air bubbles.
9. Bake the cake for 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 hours, until a tester comes out clean.
10. Allow to rest on the countertop for at least 30 minutes before turning out onto a cake plate to cool completely.

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