You know how it happens… you wake up one morning and the ligh has changed, the cold air starts nipping at your nose and the landscape has changed! I wish the switch in seasons was that pronounced in the South Carolina Lowcountry but we are definetely not in summer anymore! My in laws went apple picking in the upstate a couple of weeks ago and were nice enough to make us a big basket of gorgeous, fragrant and delicious apples. They were so good at the first bite that I immediately decided I had to do something with them. Because of our activities this weekend (I do not recommend teaching Pilates with a hangover), I put those lovelies to the side and got myself covered in powdered sugar instead.
Everything in the air today prompted me to make an apple dessert and I remembered reading about a Cooking Light recipe on a blog just recently. I can’t backtrack my steps to the actual post or blog (as it happens often after a couple of hours browsing), but I did find the recipe on the magazine website and with so many great reviews I felt encouraged to try it, even or especially (depending on which way the scale dips today) if it is “light”.
The only changes I made were to use real butter instead of stick margarine. I am not being an hypocrite since I just admitted using some Crisco in my latest buttercream but I don’t keep margarine in the house so butter it was, and regular cream cheese. I also only used 2 TB. of the cinnamon sugar called to top the cake prior to baking and not the 1/4 cup the recipe suggested.
Result? Delicious! Strong but not overpowerig cinnamon flavor. I can’t wait to try it with cardamom.
Cinnamon Apple Cake, adapted from Cooking Light
1 3/4 cups sugar, divided
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 ounces block-style cream cheese, softened (about 3/4 cup)
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 cups chopped peeled Rome apple
Cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350°.
Beat 1 1/2 cups sugar, butter, vanilla, and cream cheese at medium speed of a mixer until well-blended (about 4 minutes). Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture to creamed mixture, beating at low speed until blended.
Combine 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon. Combine 2 tablespoons cinnamon mixture and apple in a bowl, and stir apple mixture into batter. Pour batter into an 8-inch springform pan coated with cooking spray, and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon mixture.
Bake at 350° 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.
Note: You can also make this cake in a 9-inch square cake pan or a 9-inch springform pan; just reduce the cooking time by 5 minutes. Yield: 12 servings