T rees laden with fruit, soft beautiful light and the scent of Autumn in the air. My annual Orchard mini photography sessions signal the shift of seasons and the urge to cosy up in preparation for the colder months ahead.
A visit to the orchard to pick your own apples and pears is an wonderful way of spending an early Autumn afternoon – made even better by returning home and filling the home with the smell of fresh baked apple cake!
This is my family’s favourite apple cake recipe. It makes, quite honestly, the lightest and most delicious treat and because it contains one of our five a day, it can be enjoyed almost guilt free as well. I’m a bit of a cinnamon addict so tend to double (or triple) the quantity of spice. If it’s not your thing, substituting the cinnamon for grated orange zest works equally well.
We love it served warm, with a little cream and a pot of tea gathered in front of the wood burner.
Dutch Apple Cake
Put aside: 15 minutes for prep and 35 minutes for cooking, plus cooling time
What you’ll need
6 oz caster sugar plus 1/2 oz for dusting
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 oz butter
2 1/2 fl oz milk
4 1/2 oz plain flour
1/2 tsp ground cinammon
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
2 small (1 large) cooking apples
double cream to serve
What to do
1 Preheat your oven to 200⁰ C and grease a 20 cm loose bottomed tin.
2 Crack the eggs into a bowl and give them quick whisk ( a fork will do) until they’re slightly frothy. Now you can add 6 oz of the caster sugar along with the vanilla extract. Beat for 5 minutes or so until the mixture’s thick and mousse-like.
3 Melt the butter and pour it along with the milk into the mousse and mix well.
4 Sift in the flour, cinnamon and baking powder and fold gently and tip the mix into your tin.
5 Peel and core the apples, cutting into thick slices and arrange them over the mix in the tin. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar.
6 Bake it for 10 minutes before reducing the oven temperature to 180⁰ C and baking for a further 20-25 minutes.
7 Leave it to cool for 10 minutes or so before transferring it from the tin to a wire rack to cool a little longer.
8 Dust with icing sugar and serve warm with cream.
Fancy a change? Use pears instead of apples or even raspberries for a summer take on this tasty tea time treat.
To schedule your own family photography session in the orchard, just get in touch – I’d love to hear from you!