Do you remember the epic cake fails I told you about a week or so ago? Well...strange as it may seem, this rather autumnal looking, and tasting, offering is in fact one of those. You might think it a little odd that I should show it to you and give you the recipe and urge you to bake it, but, you see, I fixed it and turns out, it's rather good.
It's veryvery apply and oaty and spicy and not even remotely froufrou-ey...perfect for a Somerset boy's birthday cake you might say. Aaaaand it's one of those cakes that means you can definitely justify it's belonging to the breakfast food category...oats and apples and spices are heeeealthyyyy.
The major error was icing-based...and I should have known better. Nigella aaaalways goes on about letting cream cheese get to room temperature before you do anything with it...it gets graaaaainy, she nags. OK Nige...just because you are God of my kitchen, whatevs. Turns out...she most definitley IS God of my kitchen and knows EVERYTHING. She is right...it does go grainy if you are silly/lazy/forgetful and don't do the room temp thing and poopoo Nige and her laws.
I repent...and I will NEVER disobey again...EVER. My 'fix' was to ingeniously scrape the grainy icing off the perfectly good cake once it had indeed reached room temperature and give it a good beating. It happily complied to smoothness and my fail was no longer a fail. ALWAYS LISTEN TO NIGE. With Love and Cake.
Very Appley-Apple Cake.
original recipe by Tea and Cookies
A few notes:
- The icing is not mandatory, it would be a very lovely tea-time cake without it...but birthday cakes need icing don't they.
- If you do make the icing though, I will reiterate what I said above....make sure that you get the butter and mascarpone out of the fridge plenty of time before you make it, allowing them to come completely to room temperature. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP....I am not just telling you to do this for fun, your icing will be grainy if you use fridge cold ingredients.
- You could substitute regular cream cheese for the mascarpone if you fancied...it might be a bit less rich, which would not be a bad thing.
Makes 1 big cake
You will need
1x23cm cake tine, greased and base lined
For the cake
190g plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp all spice
1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
175g caster sugar
175ml vegetable oil, or other flavourless oil
splash of vanilla extract
2 bramley apples, peeled and finely chopped
For the icing
125g butter, at room temperature
250g mascarpone, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
250g icing sugar
- Preheat the oven to 180c.
- Mix the flour, oats, bicarb, spices, sugar and salt together in a large mixing bowl.
- In another bowl or measuring jug, whisk together the oil, eggs and vanilla.
- Pour the wet ingredients steadily into the dry, while whisking together.
- Gently fold the chopped apple into the mixture and pour it into your prepared cake tin.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes, at which point the cake should be dark bronze and firm in the centre.
- Leave to cool completely in the cake tin before turning out and icing.
- To make the icing, whisk or beat the butter into a smooth paste.
- Add the mascarpone and vanilla and beat until combined.
- Add the icing sugar a few spoonfuls at a time, beating to a light paste.
- Spoon and spread the icing over the cold cake, and top with dried apple if you feel so inclined.