When September rolls around, I want apples.
I want to go apple picking. I want to drink apple cider. I want to eat caramel apples.
I want to bake with apples.
I stumbled across this recipe, which combines apples with my favorite spice, cinnamon. It’s very simple to pull together; the most complicated thing about it is needing a springform pan, and you could even do away with that.
The result is a tender, moist cake, almost like an English steamed pudding. It’s chockful of apple flavor and the cinnamon topping gives everything a nice lift. I wish the cake itself had more cinnamon flavor but a) that could probably be easily achieved by combining more cinnamon sugar with the apples and b) I always want more cinnamon, so this may be more of my personal taste rather than a fault of the recipe.
Cinnamon Apple Cake (adapted)
1 ¾ cups sugar, divided
1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup), softened
1 tsp. vanilla extract
6 ounces block-style fat-free cream cheese, softened (about 3/4 cup)
2 large eggs
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsps. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
3 cups chopped peeled baking apples (about 2 large)
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F. Lightly oil a 8-inch springform pan* and set aside.
Beat 1 ½ cups sugar, margarine, vanilla, and cream cheese at medium speed of a mixer until well-blended. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture to creamed mixture, beating at low speed until blended.
In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon. Toss two tablespoons of the cinnamon mixture with the apples in a bowl. Fold apple mixture into batter. Pour batter into prepared pan and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon mixture.
Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until the cake pulls away from the sides of the pan. Cool the cake completely on a wire rack, and cut using a serrated knife.
*You can substitute a 9-inch square cake pan or a 9-inch springform pan if you reduce the baking time by 5 minutes.