Italian Apple Cake

This is a moist and delicious apple cake which we made in our cooking class in Umbria, Italy during our Italian food tour. We selected new season apples at the market and turned them into this wonderful cake. It is an easy cake to prepare, once the apples are sliced all you need to do is prepare the simple batter and layer it in the tin.

Enjoy it warm with cream or ice cream, however it seems to get even better the next day. Somehow the apples intensify in flavour.

150g brown sugar
3 eggs
125ml olive oil
100ml milk (use almond milk to make the cake dairy free)
1/3 cup sultanas, soaked in grappa or brandy (or any liquer you have on hand)
50g pine nuts, lightly toasted
50g walnuts, lightly toasted and finely chopped
3 to 4 apples (depending on size), peeled and sliced
zest & juice 1 lemon
50g almond meal
100g flour (regular or gluten free)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder

Topping
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 160C. Grease and line a 24cm springform cake pan and place on an oven tray to catch any oil that may leak from the pan.
  2. Sprinkle the base and sides of the pan with half of the finely chopped walnuts (you may need to brush the paper with a little olive oil so that the nuts will stick).
  3. Combine the apples with lemon juice and zest, set aside whilst you prepare the batter.
  4. Combine sugar, eggs, olive oil and milk in a large bowl. Add the almond meal, flour & baking powder and mix to combine.
  5. Pour a 1/3 of the batter into the pan, top with 1/3 apples, scatter with a 1/3 of the sultanas and 1/3 of the pine nuts and 1/3 of the remaining chopped walnuts. Repeat layers – batter, apple, sultanas and nuts.
  6. Combine the topping ingredients and sprinkle evenly over the top of the cake.
  7. Bake for about 1 hour or until firm to the touch and golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  8. Serve warm with thick cream or ice cream.

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