Apple and cinnamon, is there any other flavour combination on this planet more capable of conjuring up soothing, comforting and delicious childhood memories? For me, these wonderfully homely aromas instantly transport me back to the school yard and right inside my home economics class, where my love affair with baking began as I baked a wonderful tea cake filled with apple, cinnamon and vanilla.
This lovely little teacake is the happy result of a fruit bowl filled with not so happy looking apples and is gorgeously dense. And when I say dense I mean that in the best sense of the word, it’s not heavy and stodgy but rather tremendously moist thanks to the load of lovely juicy apple. The grated apple strewn through the cake does something so very wonderful to the texture, when baked the apple melts and almost completely disappears leaving behind all of its sweet juices that meld the crumb of the cake together to create a very luscious, moist and tender crumb.
For Grace, this cake is the perfect texture for her little hands to grip, the cake holds together easily as she ferries it to her mouth blissfully unaware of the copious amounts of apple she’s nibbling on. And this cake also has me feeling like a very happy mama, I managed to incorporate four apples into the batter and halve the sugar without losing any sweetness or flavour thanks to the cinnamon.
This recipe begins with sifting the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and sugar into a big mixing bowl.
In a jug I placed the oil, eggs, vanilla bean paste and yoghurt and mixed until combined. I then made a well in the flour mix and poured in the wet ingredients and stirred until lusciously combined.
I then grated three of the apples and folded through the cake batter.
The cake batter was then poured into a lined loaf tin.
I then sliced the remaining apple into thin pieces to adorn the top of the cake along with a sprinkling of caster sugar and cinnamon.
The apple tea cake was then popped into a moderate oven to bake for 30-40 minutes, or until golden and cooked.
The soul soothing aromas of baked apple and cinnamon quickly filled the house and sent me straight back to the home economics class where I first discovered the delights of this lovely apple studded beauty.
When cooled, I sliced a couple of pieces of the apple tea cake, popped them in the lunch box along with our favourite sultanas and mandarin pieces and off we went to start our day, joyful in the fact we knew we had a couple of slices of cake to nibble on for morning tea.
Apple tea cake
Adapted from Kayla Marie’s Kitchen
2 cups plain flour
1 tablespoon cinnamon, plus ½ teaspoon extra to sprinkle over top of cake
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ cup caster sugar (I was happy with this amount of sugar as my apples were very sweet, you may like to add a little more sugar according to your apples), plus 1 tablespoon to sprinkle over top of cake
¾ cup (180ml) vegetable oil
1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste
1 cup thick natural yoghurt
4 apples (3 grated, 1 sliced)
Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F) and line a loaf tin with baking paper. Sift the flour, cinnamon, baking powder and sugar into a large bowl and make a well in the centre. Place the oil, eggs, vanilla and yoghurt in a bowl or jug and whisk to combine. Pour the wet ingredients into the well of the dry and mix until combined. Fold through the grated apple. Pour the mixture into the lined loaf tin, press apple slices into the top of the cake and sprinkle with a dusting of cinnamon and caster sugar. Bake for 35 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer.
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