Baking with Apples


Fall is here and I want to start baking!!  Everything in the summer is so fresh, you just want to eat it that way…as well as not heating up your home by turning on the oven.

But when fall arrives, I want the oven on, baking delicious food that fills the house with smells that bring comfort to everyone.

I picked up a variety of apples the other day at Harners Farm to make a recipe that was recently published in the Food section of the Washington Post (yes, I love the Wednesday food sections of major newspapers). 

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Harvest Apple Cake.  This cake is moist and full of apples–it really should be called Baked Apples with a Little Cake.  I added a handful of raspberries to bring a bit of tartness to it because I had raspberries in my fridge.  Delicious combo!

Harvest Apple Cake

(adapted from cookbook author Lisa Yockelson)

1 and 2/3 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

1 and ½ teaspoons cinnamon

¼ teaspoon nutmeg

8 Tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

1 cup sugar

2 eggs and 1 egg yolk

1 and ½ teaspoons vanilla

2 and ½ cups peeled, cored and diced apples, cut into ½ inch chunks (3-4 medium apples)

¾ cup raspberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter or spray Pam inside a 9 inch round baking pan with 2 inch sides (I used a glass dish and it worked).

Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg into a bowl.

In a separate bowl, or with a stand mixer, place the butter and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add the cream cheese and mix with the butter another 1 minute. Mix in the sugar, then add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each one is added. Add the vanilla and mix well; scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

On low speed, add the flour mixture in two additions. Mixing just until the flour is absorbed. Then stir in the apples and raspberries.

Scrape the batter into the prepared baking pan, smoothing the surface.  Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the cake has risen and set.  It should pull away slightly from the sides of the pan.  The top of the cake will be a golden color and will look somewhat bumpy because of the apple chunks.

Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes and invert onto a plate, then invert again to stand right side up– if desired.  We just sliced pieces out of the pan!!  Sprinkle cinnamon sugar or powdered sugar on top–also if desired. You can also serve the cake with ice cream for an extra treat!

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