Wednesday, October 17, 2012

It's Apple TIme - A Favorite Cake

So do you remember this scene from "My Big Fat Greek Wedding"? Priceless.



"It's a CAKE!" What Maria didn't know is that most American home bakers have a good Bundt recipe in their repetoire. I bet you do. And yes "There is a hole in this cake."

This Apple Harvest Cake is a favorite here at the farm every fall. The recipe came from my friend Janice Abraham who I met in Oregon while I was on an exchange program my junior year of college. That year was also the year I met The Farmer. Every time I bake it, I think of Janice and the hours we spent in the weaving department at Oregon State University in Corvallis. I also think of how important that year was for me in my journey to becoming an adult. Being far from home completely on my own - away for my first Thanksgiving and having a great holiday anyway. It was the first time I roasted a turkey and fed a group of 40 people. It was a great year.


This is a great cake to get your family accustomed to whole wheat flour (if they are like mine). It travels well so would make a nice cake for a picnic or wrapped up in a lunch box.

Apple Harvest Cake

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 12 cup bundt pan.

1 1/4 cup unbleached flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 eggs
2 cups peeled and finely chopped apples
       (I used 2 large apples - one Red Delicious and one Honey Crisp)
1 cup nuts - walnuts taste best with apples.

In a large bowl, measure all dry ingredients and mix. Add remaining ingredients except apples and nuts. Beat for three minutes at medium speed. Mixture will be thick. By hand, stir in apples and nuts.

Bake in a 12 cup bundt pan at 325 degrees for 55 to 65 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.  The cake will be moist. Cool in pan for 15 minutes. Turn out and cool completely.

Top with the following glaze if you like things sweet:
Mix together:
1/2 cup powdered sugar - run through a sieve so it doesn't have lumps like mine did!
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 - 3 teaspoons milk. 
Drizzle over the cooled cake.

My cake had a bit of problems - I forgot to flour the pan after spraying it - so I would suggest a good coating of shortening or butter and some flour. Maybe it is time to retire my 30 year old bundt pan and look for one of those swanky silicone versions. Anyone have any experience with those? The glaze can be omitted.

I used local wheat from North Star Farms in nearby Northfield, MA. Check out their wheat!

10 comments:

mn_bird said...

I haven't tried the silicone version of a bundt pan and would encourage you to stay with the traditional pan. The "American" version of this type of cake pan came about because some women in the 1950's wanted to make the cakes that they remember from back in Germany. They approached the company founder of Nordic Ware, who developed the pan. This company is still in business in the west metro of Minneapolis and still makes bundt pans.

hlmauera said...

I love your blog and the fact that we share the same name and even spell it the same. I work at Oregon State and am an alumni also so it was fun to hear that you have good memories from here.
I've been wondering about Winston and Archie. How are they doing? Do you have any new pictures? I noticed that one of the flocks in our area last year had a Great Pyrenees guarding it but I haven't seen it again.
Kristin

Spiffypaws said...

I personally don't like bundt pans because the crevices are prone to sticking for some kinds of cakes. I use a tube pan instead. I have tried silicone baking pans, but I don't like them because baked goods don't brown well in them, and you have to use a sheet pan under the silicone whenever you move it because the pans are "floppy".

Susan said...

One of my favorite scenes from that movie was when someone was introduced as a vegetarian and the aunt said (paraphrased) "What you don't eat no meat, that's OK this is lamb!"

Kathy said...

Your cake looks great and sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing the recipe. I was just looking for a new way to use some apples. I recently purchased one of those fantastic little apple peeler/slicer crank machines and have been buying apples like crazy for myself, my grandkids, and my class of third and fourth graders - who love to prepare them for snacks using that little device! We even made dried apples a few weeks ago. With holidays coming up, I will put it to good use for pies and now your cake. I, too, have a VERY old Bundt pan (it was a wedding gift in 1969 ) and it still works fine. Just remember to flour yours next time and I bet you'll have better success.

Kathy at Knitting Off The Grid said...

Oh, that sounds quite yummy and it is now on my to-do list this afternoon. I just have to wait for one thing - one more egg from our "girls"!! I was just out cleaning their hen house and had a firm talk with them that we need more eggs!

I bet this cake makes the whole house smell scrumptious.

Thanks so much for the recipe.

Dianne@sheepdreams said...

No matter how many times I watch that movie, it still makes me laugh out loud! I have a similar apple cake recipe and I usually use a tube pan. I don't care for the silicone pans (though I love my Silpat mat).

Judy said...

Thanks for the laugh! It makes me want to watch that movie again. I absolutely love your colorful chairs in the top photo!! I have one shiny red painted chair with a woven seat from my grandmother's house and I love it. But I never sit in it!!!

Helen Hart said...

Hi Kristin, even though we don't have an apple tree, will make the cake. Love your blog, have several of your books AND I am a graduate of Oregon State College--my beloved husband of 53 years graduated from Oregon State University. Same place. Grew up there, didn't do Home Ec or weaving, but fond memories. We graduated 60 and 61 respectively. From Helen in cold Wyoming and flowers are gone.

Farmerjane said...

I like the traditional bundt pan better than the silicon one. You have to really grease the pan and leave enough head room that the cake can "fall" out.