Friday, November 5, 2010

Caramel Apple Cake

Cake21From our Food Network Magazine Club party we had this succulent Caramel Apple Cake for dessert.  For those that are interested it is in the October 2010 issue on page 141 or you can follow along right here. A few things before we start. You need a special pan: a round 9x3 pan to be exact. Thank you Laura for sending it my way!  The first time I made this cake I used Honeycrisp apples because they are my favorite type of apple. I just love them. Well, they aren't really suited for this cake, so if you decide to make it just stick to the Golden Delicious apples that the recipe calls for. Another note that will be mentioned later as well, is that I burnt the caramel the first time I made it after following the magazine instructions. I think it turned out better when the caramel was a lighter color, like in the photo above.
CakeShall we begin? We’ll start by making the caramel first.  I had never actually made caramel before and now that I have made this cake I can’t believe how easy it is to make.  I think I may just have to make caramel just for fun sometime.
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In a saucepan heat the corn syrup and sugar together. I had my doubts at first because it just looked hard and I didn’t think it would ever turn into caramel.

Cake4 Boy was I wrong. After several minutes the sugar liquefied and turned into this. Cake5 Cake6
Once it is a light amber color, (the magazine says dark amber, but I have to say when I did that it burned) add the butter and cream. Be careful because it will splatter and if it gets on your skin it will burn. I’m just sayin’. If you have babies around kick them out of the kitchen. Really. It’s a must. Just do it.
There you have it. Pour 1 1/2 cups of the caramel into a measuring cup and then the rest goes into your greased pan. This was the first time that I made the caramel. It’s a little dark and burnt, so when you try it remember that it shouldn’t look this dark. My kids still love it. They didn’t care. Me? I made the cake 3 more times until I perfected it. Now I think I can make this cake in my sleep! Okay, moving right along.
Cake17While the caramel is cooling you are going to quarter your apples. With the last apple you are going to slice it in half horizontally and scoop out the core. Chop up the other half of the apple for later. Once the caramel has cooled place the apples in the pan like the picture above. Looks cool doesn’t it?
Cake1Here are your ingredients for the cake batter. Nice cast of characters don’t you think?  Cake8Cake9
In a small bowl you are going to combine the vanilla, orange juice, and sour cream; basically all of your wet ingredients. In another bowl combine your dry ingredients.
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Next cream your butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then you are going to add one egg at a time and mix until combined.
Once you have mixed all of the eggs in add half of the wet ingredients. Mix well. Then add half of the dry ingredients. Mix well and repeat. The mixture should not be runny.
Remember that pan with the caramel and apples? Grab it. Pour the cake batter over the top of it. Then grab the leftover, chopped up apple and sprinkle it over the top.
Stick that cake into the oven for about an hour and 20 minutes. That’s right. Grab a cup of coffee and relax. Read my blog, check out my Facebook page. Just chill. It’s going to be awhile. When you pull the cake out a toothpick should come out clean. Then you get to wait some more while the cake cools.
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Once the cake cools then the caramel starts to harden a bit, so pull out your sauce pan. Fill it with a little water and heat it to a simmer. Stick the cake in there for about 8 minutes, until the caramel gets soft again. Then grab your cake plate and flip the cake upside down onto the plate. Carefully lift the pan off.
Cake23There you have it. Completely worth the wait! You will love this cake. I sure did. I made it four times in just one month. 
Caramel Apple Cake
For the Caramel and Apples:
  • 4 Tablespoons unsalted, butter, plus more for the pan
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 5 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 4 large Golden Delicious apples (1 1/2 to 2 pounds)
For the Batter:
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  1. Butter a 9x3 inch round pan. Set that aside and make the caramel. Cook the sugar and corn syrup in a large skillet over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is a dark amber, 7 to 10 minutes
  2. Reduce the heat to medium. Carefully add the cream and 4 tablespoons butter (it will splatter) and cook, stirring, until combined, about 3 minutes.
  3. Remove the skillet from the heat and let sit 1 minute. Pour 1 1/2 cups caramel into a glass measuring cup and set aside. Pour the remaining caramel into the prepared pan and set aside until set, about 30 minutes.
  4. Cut 3 apples into quarters and cut out the cores. Arrange the pieces skin-side down in the pan (overlapping them slightly) to form a ring about 1/2 inch from the edge. Save any pieces that do not fit for later.
  5. Halve the remaining whole apple crosswise. Scoop out the seeds with a melon baller or measuring spoon, leaving the stem on the top half. Chop the bottom and any of the leftover quartered apples into pieces; set aside.
  6. Arrange apple top, stem side down, in the center of the pan. If the quartered apples shift, just push them back into place.
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make the batter. Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. In a small bowl, whisk sour cream, orange juice,and vanilla.
  8. Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar on medium high speed until light and fluffy about 5 minutes.
  9. Crack the eggs into a small bowl. Slip them into the mixer bowl, one at a time, and beat until the mixture is pale and creamy, about 5 more minutes. Scrape down the bowl and beater with a rubber spatula.
  10. With the mixer on low speed, add half of the sour cream mixture, then half of the flour mixture.  Repeat.  Turn off mixer and scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula; finish combining the batter by hand.
  11. Spread the batter over the apples in the pan. Top with the chopped apple. Bake on middle oven rack until the cake is brown on top and springs back when pressed, 1 hour to 1 hour 20 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack.
  12. Bring 1 inch of water to a simmer in a skillet wide enough to hold the cake pan. Carefully run a sharp knife around the inside of the pan several times, then rest the pan in the water to soften the caramel, about 8 minutes. Remove the pan from the water and dry.
  13. Inver a plate on top of the cake, then flip over the cake and plate. Using pot holders or a towel, wriggle the pan off. Soften the reserved 1 1/2 cups of caramel in the microwave, about 2 minutes. Drizzle the cake with some of the caramel. Slice and serve with the rest.
I would love to hear how this cake turns out for you, so please let me know!

1 comment:

MarshaMarshaMarsha said...

I am sitting here, staring at that apple cake. *drool*