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Apple Cake – Wartime Recipes

My youngest boy loves his apples. He probably eats at least two every day ( and after each one he asks “mummy am I stronger now?” Since daddy told him apples make you strong!) so imagine his delight when he got his hands on this whopper. Kindly given to him by a friendly apple farmer we often see on our walks with the dog. He told me that even though these huge apples taste as good as the smaller ones they can't get as much money for them as the “handsized” ones. So each time we come along he has been calling us over and giving us giant apples to take home. Imagine my surprise yesterday when I opened my front door and saw three bags full of apples sitting there. Very exciting. So today I have been making apple jam and trying to think of lots of other ways to use up all those apples.

I came across a lovely and pleasingly simple recipe in a wartime recipe book that you can find here. The recipe is called “apple cake” but it's not really a cake at all. It is two very thin layers of shortcrust pastry with a filling of puréed spiced apple in the centre. It would be very nice warm with custard but we decided to eat ours cold and cut into squares with a dusting of sugar over the top. Yum.

Apple Cake

  • Short crust pastry (I used this recipe, it gave just the right amount)
  • 450g prepared weight of apples (peeled, cored, cubed)
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 30g dairy free margarine
  • Sprinkling (to taste) of cinnamon, cloves or mixed spice
  • 2 tbsp water

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.

  1. If you are making the pastry do so now. Cut the ball in half and roll out one half thinly and put onto a rectangular tin then put that plus the leftover piece (for the top) into the fridge to chill.
  2. Place the rest of the ingredients into a pan and place over a medium heat on the hob. Stir occasionally until the margarine has melted then put the lid on and let the apples soften. Once they are soft enough to purée mash the mixture until no big lumps remain, perfection isn't important though.
  3. Spread this mixture evenly over the pastry base then roll out and lay the rest of the pastry over the top. Make a little hole in the top for the steam to escape then brush with some dairy free milk and place in the oven.
  4. Bake in the oven until the top is golden, approx 20 to 30 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle the top with a little sugar then leave to cool before cutting into slices, I find a pizza slicer is good for this.

 

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