This is a recipe that is really great with apples, but I have made it with fresh peaches during the summer. The apples in the center of this cake make it very moist and flavorful. Serve it after dinner (or before - after all, life is unpredictable) topped with fresh whipped cream and cups of piping hot coffee. Enjoy!
4 large Granny Smith apples
1 1/2 tsp fruit fresh or 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
6 tablespoons *apple cider reduction
2 1/2 tbsp Pumpkin pie spice
4 tbsp Kahlua
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups all-purpose Flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 large egg r/t (room temperature)
1 1/4 cup buttermilk r/t
1 1/2 sticks melted unsalted butter
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 tsp fresh lemon zest
Coarse sanding sugar (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Spray a10- to 12-inch square or round cake pan with non-stick baking spray and set aside.
Peel, core and slice the apples into thin slices across rather than lengthwise. Place apple slices in a very large mixing bowl and combine with Fruit Fresh or lemon juice, brown sugar, cider reduction, pumpkin pie spice, Kahlua and salt. Using a rubber spatula gently toss to coat. Cover and set asides while you assemble cake batter.
Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt, set aside.
Combine the buttermilk, melted butter and vanilla.
In the bowl of an electric mixer beat eggs and sugar on high until light in color with a smooth, satin-like appearance. Reduce speed to low and add the flour mixture alternately with buttermilk mixture, beginning and ending with the flour. Periodically stop mixer and scrape down sides and bottom of the mixing bowl to ensure batter is well blended.
Pour 1/3 of the batter into the prepared baking pan (or skillet). Spoon the apple mixture onto the batter and cover with remaining batter. For the best results, make sure the apples are distributed outward towards the edges of the pan. This way your cake will bake evenly.
Sprinkle with coarse sanding sugar, if desired. Bake the cake for about 50 to 60 minutes, until it is light brown and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool for about 5 minutes. Loosen the edges of the cake from the pan, and cool for another 20 minutes or so. If you haven't sprinkled with coarse sanding sugar, dust with confectioner's sugar and serve topped with whipped cream.
* Makes one 10" cake, and will serve 8 to 12 people.
* Boil 2 cups of cider until reduced by 1/3 to 1/2. Let cool slightly before using.