This is a really lovely, simple, autumnal cake that can be made with basic ingredients and is ready in under 45 minutes. I love baking this cake as it fills my kitchen with the lovely aromas of apple and cinnamon. It’s a good cake to make with children too – my kids love helping me make (and eat!) this one.
I have used soft brown sugar in the recipe, as I love the dark smoky taste it gives the cake, but if you don’t have any to hand this cake will work just as well with ordinary brown sugar or even caster sugar, though the flavour will be different.
I have used 1 large cooking apple in my recipe, as I like the more tart flavour, which contrasts well with the sweetness of the cake, but if you have a sweeter tooth than me, or if you don’t have any cooking apples, this recipe works with dessert apples too, though you will probably need to use 2 dessert apples, since they tend to be smaller than cooking apples.
I have used the creaming method in my recipe below, because I am an old-fashioned girl and that is how I make my cakes! If you prefer, you can use the all-in-one method instead: simply put all of the ingredients, apart from the apples, into a bowl and mix together using an electric hand whisk, then continue from step 6.
I like to eat this cake just as it is and slightly warm from the oven, but you could serve it with some whipped cream if you want to be really decadent, and I have a sneaking suspicion this would also work rather well with custard! It’s lovely cold the next day too and a really nice thing to pop into a packed lunch!
- 175g butter (or margarine), softened
- 175g dark soft brown sugar (plus an extra tablespoon for sprinkling on top)
- 3 eggs
- 175g self-raising flour
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 large cooking apple (or two small dessert apples)
- Pre-heat your oven to 180C. Grease a 20 cm (8 inch) cake tin and line the bottom with some baking parchment.
- Put the butter and sugar into a large mixing bowl and beat until pale and fluffy, using a wooden spoon (or an electric hand whisk).
- Add the eggs one at a time. Thoroughly mix in each egg before adding in the next one.
- Add in the flour and the cinnamon and carefully mix together using a wooden spoon. Stop when all the flour is incorporated – don’t over mix at this stage!
- Add the 2 tablespoons of milk and stir in gently.
- Peel and core your apple. Cut half of the apple into 8 - 10 slices. Chop the other half into small pieces (roughly half centimetre cubes).
- Put the small pieces of apple into the cake mixture and stir gently to combine.
- Tip the cake batter into your greased and lined tin and gently smooth the top with the back of a wooden spoon. Arrange your apple slices on top and sprinkle a tablespoon of brown sugar as evenly as possible over the top of the cake.
- Bake in your pre-heated oven for 25 minutes. Check if the cake is done by inserting a skewer (or the handle of a teaspoon) into the centre of the cake. If it comes out clean, the cake is done. If the skewer is covered in cake batter cook for a further 5 minutes and check again.
- When the cake is done, allow it to cool for 10 minutes in the tin, then turn out onto a wire cooling rack.