Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Apple Cider Quatre Quarts Cake
From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...I'm told this cake comes from the orchard regions of Quebec. Those who speak French call cakes of this type quatre quart, which literally means 4 fourths. The rest of us call them pound cake because they were originally made with a pound each of flour, butter, eggs, and sugar. This is a seasonal version of the cake and it may not be to everyone's liking. It is lightly spiced and flavored with an apple cider reduction. Those who enjoy cider donuts will love this cake, others probably not so much. I must admit the cake grew on me and I liked it better on day three than I did on one. It was moist and fragrant , but it certainly was not as light or tender as I had been told it would be. For what it's worth, were I to make this again, and I probably won't, I'd used a mulled cider reduction for stronger flavor. The cake, with current spicing, offers the promise of cider season but really does not deliver. It was a disappointment. Here's the recipe.
Apple Cider Quatre Quarts Cake...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite, courtesy of about.com
3 cups apple cider
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 cups sugar
1-1/2 cups butter, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
6 eggs, room temperature
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1) Bring apple cider to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Boil cider for 25 to 35 minutes, or until it has reduced to slightly less than 1 cup. Remove cider from heat and add maple syrup. Set aside.; set the mixture aside.
2) Preheat and oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly grease a 10-inch bundt cake pan and set it aside.
3) Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla until mixture is light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, to mixture, beating for a few seconds after each addition. Stir together remaining dry ingredients (flour, spices, baking powder, and salt) and then add half to creamed butter-egg mixture and beat until most of flour is incorporated.
4) Add cooled apple cider-maple syrup reduction to batter, beat it for 30 seconds, and then beat in remainder of dry ingredients. Spread batter into prepared pan and bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
5) Cool cake in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Shake it from side to side to loosen cake from pan (you should hear and feel a light thumping), and use a small rubber spatula to loosen any stubborn sides. Place a serving platter over top of cake and invert it, removing pan to allow cake to cool completely. Yield: 12 to 14 servings.
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