Foof! A belated Happy New Year to everyone.
I haven't mentioned cake in a while but this weekend saw me baking a new cake, and baking it twice at that!
One of the blogs I read is Smitten Kitchen and on Saturday Deb posted a recipe for Apple Sharlotka which her Russian mother-in-law makes. It is so simple and so full of fruit that I went off there and then to bake it, and trial it on Mr G's friend Mr C.
This is what was left:
I'll take that as a positive response.
On Sunday, we had another visitor so I made a variation of Deb's recipe. I have to say I prefer my version but it is probably not very Russian anymore.
Deb's original version is here and mine is below.
Apple Sharlotka - the probably-not-very-Russian variation
7 large Granny Smiths apples
4 medium eggs (or 3 large depending on what you have in the fridge)
120 g caster sugar
80g muscovado sugar (or dark soft brown)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
about ½tsp ground cinnamon
small handful of flaked almonds
Preheat oven to 180C. Line a 9"/23cm springform tin with parchment (not greaseproof!). Butter the sides of the tin. Peel, core and quarter the apples, then cut each quarter into slices about the thickness of a pound/euro coin. Sprinkle the apples with the ground cinnamon, turning as you sprinkle to coat all the slices. Tip the apples into the tin.
Make the batter by beating the eggs with the sugar (break up any lumps in the brown sugar before you start) and vanilla essence until thick and you can lift the beaters out and make a trail in the egg mixture. Fold in the flour until just combined (a bit like making brownies) to end up with a very thick batter.
Pour the batter over the apples making sure they are all covered with the batter. Sprinkle the flaked almonds over the top. Bake in the preheated oven until a skewer come out clean (about 55 minutes). Cool in the tin for 10 minutes or so then turn out onto a plate, peel off the parchment and turn the cake right side up again onto a second plate. Eat warm or cold with a dollop of cream.
A few notes:
Deb specifies Granny Smiths and that's what I used with my variation. For the first cake I used Pink Lady apples. I think Cox's Orange Pippins would be better than both of these, and will try that next time.
Deb descries this cake as a bit like a cloufouti although the 'sponge' reminded me more of British trifle sponges, but don't let that put you off!!
Both times my cakes came out well browned but with slightly crispy apples. Rereading Deb's recipe I see that she cuts her apples into little slivers rather than slices; also my oven runs ridiculously hot so even though I compensated, perhaps I should have turned it down further.
oh. Ps. I finally added a photo of the cut Canadian fruit cake to the post from a while back. So full of cherries - heaven!