Monday, September 2, 2013

Dutch Apple Cake

Minnesota has been known for sudden weather temperature changes. In just a week's time we have gone from hot, muggy 90's plummeting all the way down to the 50's. Cooler temperatures are more of an incentive to fire up the oven. 
The apple harvest is coming in and a new variety has been developed this year by the University of Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station called zestar.
"Crunch into Zestar" is the slogan and is an early season winner. It has a crisp, juicy and exciting zesty flavor with a hint of brown sugar. 
I wish I had been able to find Zestar apples when I was making this Dutch Apple Cake. But Granny Smith apples are always a good standby and never fail in recipes to hold up.
Cook's notes: There were some reservations as I read the recipe but I always like a cooking challenge. The recipe called for using a whisk not a mixer and the amount of sugar and apples suggested I felt were too much. So I made some adjustments and was quite satisfied with the end result. I felt two cups of sugar was a lot for a 13 x 9 pan so cut back to 3/4 for each sugar and cut back from 7 to 5 apples. 
recipe adapted from Midwest Living Recipes for all Seasons 2013 
Serve the cake warm or at room temperature. 
Dutch Apple Cake
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  •  1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar 
  • 2-1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 5 cooking apples peeled and cut into 1-1/2 chunks (tart like Granny Smith)
  • 1-1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • You will not use a mixer for this recipe
  • Preheat oven to 325 and grease a 13 x 9 pan
  • In a bowl whisk flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg-set aside
  • In a large bowl whisk eggs until well combined and then whisk in oil, brown sugar, white sugar and vanilla
  • Whisk egg/sugar mixture into flour mixture and combine till well blended
  • Fold apples and nuts into flour/sugar mixture with a wooden spoon. Note the batter will be very thick and just coat the apples

Bake for 60 minutes but start checking at 50 minutes
Toothpick should come out clean from center. Cool pan on a wire rack.

 Caramel Glaze
  • 6 TB. butter
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1-1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • Cook and stir until well blended over medium heat for 2 minutes
  • Increase heat a little and boil 2 minutes
  • Remove from heat whisk in powdered sugar till well blended
  • Let glaze sit at least 30 minutes to cool and thicken-optional sprinkling nuts on top

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