Thursday, April 22, 2010
Old-Fashioned Applesauce Cake
From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...An egg salad sandwich began the reverie that led me to this cake. My love affair with egg salad began in elementary school, soon after the second world war ended. It wasn't something that appeared on rationed tables, so this pedestrian sandwich was a real treat once eggs again became available. During the war years, eggs were precious and saved for special occasions. Popular cakes used few or no eggs and were sweetened with small amounts of sugar extended with pureed fruit or fruit syrup. Adults, as I remember it, really enjoyed this cake. It was chock full of dried fruits and nuts and had a holiday air about it that brightened those bleak times. It's probably no surprise to learn that this cake had less appeal for children. During the war years, the cake was dusted with sugar rather than frosted, but the original recipe called for a powdered sugar icing which is delicious. As you read through the ingredient list, you'll be able to see that a cream cheese frosting would also be wonderful with this cake. Purists still make the cake with homemade applesauce but a thick commercial variety can be used by those pressed for time. I know that's most of us. These days this treat falls more into the category of snack cakes. It is very easy to make and I think you'll enjoy it. Like all cakes of this type, it is better when allowed to sit a day or two and it stays moist if well wrapped. Here's the recipe.
Old-Fashioned Applesauce Cake...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1-1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour, divided use
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1-1/4 cups thick applesauce
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons cream or milk
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 9-inch spring form pan. Set aside.
2) Combine raisins, currants and walnuts in a small bowl. Add 1/4 cup flour and mix well. Set aside.
3) Beat butter in bowl of an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Slowly add sugar. When incorporated add egg and mix to combine.
4) Sift remaining 1-1/4 cup flour with baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon in a large bowl. Add flour mixture to batter in 3 parts, alternating with applesauce. Stir in raisin-currant and nut mixture.
5) Spoon batter (it will be thick) into prepared springform pan. Bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Remove sides of pan.
6) While cake cools, beat butter with vanilla in bowl of an electric mixer. Slowly add sugar, beating until mealy. Add just enough cream to make icing spreadable. Spread over top and sides of cooled caked. Yield 8 to 10 servings.
You might also enjoy these recipes:
Apfel Sahne Torte - One Perfect Bite
One Bowl Gluten-Free Spice Cake
Okanagan Apple Bread - One Perfect Bite