Dinner for Friends, Part 2

This cake was the finishing piece of the dinner for friends. It was so delicious, I thought it deserved a post all to itself.

Again, to remind you, this meal will make you look like a rock star, promise.

Back to the cake: more apple than batter, when this cake bakes, it becomes almost like an apple pudding. Think of the texture of bread pudding, replace the bread with apples, and that will almost get you to this cake. I kept being overly paranoid about it not being done in the center, but once it cooled to room temperature and settled, it was absolutely perfect.

I made this cake the morning of the dinner party, to cut down on things to cook later in the day, and to allow the cake to fully cool to room temperature. It would be perfect dolloped with a bit of creme fraiche, sour cream, or whipped cream and served alongside a steaming hot cup of coffee or tea. The only thing I’d suggest is to line the bottom of your springform pan with a piece of parchment cut to fit. The cake is so sticky, this would help you move it to a cake stand for presentation later.

Marie-Helene’s Apple Cake
Recipe Courtesy of Dorie Greenspan’s Around my French Table

3/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
4 large apples (choose different kinds, I used 2 granny smith and 2 honeycrisp)
2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
3 tbsp dark rum (could substitute a little rum extract)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, with an oven rack set to the center of your oven. Take a 9 inch springform pan, line bottom with a 9 inch round of parchment paper and butter everything well.

2. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in a small bowl. Peel your apples, cut them in half, remove the cores. Cut the apples into 1 to 2 inch chunks.

3. In a seperate bowl, beat the eggs until foamy. Pour in sugar and whisk until blended, about a minute. Whisk in rum and vanilla. At this point, add half the flour mixture, whisk until just combined. Add half the butter, stir to incorporate. Follow this with the remaining flour mixture, whisking to combine, and then add remaining butter. Mix gently after each addition to achieve a smooth batter.

4. Using a rubber spatula, stir batter and all chopped apples together, ensuring that each apple is coated with a bit of batter. Scrape the mixture into your springform pan, using the spatula to smooth out the surface and make sure the cake is even.

5. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until the top is browned and a knife inserted into the center comes out mostly clean. Transfer to a wire cooling rack, cool for five minutes. Using a butter knife, run the knife around the edges of the cake, seperating the cake and pan. Remove the side of the springform pan slowly to make sure nothing is stuck. After this, allow to cool completely to room temperature. After it has cooled, you may transfer to a cake plate. Serve.


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