From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...According to Myrtle Allen, the legendary Irish cook from Ballymaloe House in County Cork, homemade apple cakes are the most popular dessert in Ireland. Last year, I shared the history of the Kerry Apple Cake and myths surrounding the proliferation of apples in Ireland with you. If you'd like a refresher, you can link to that feature here. The cake I'm featuring tonight is an Irish classic that is made with slight variations in most of the homes in Ireland. It is simple and delicious and comes together quickly. The cake is traditionally made with ground cloves in a quantity that I think is excessive. When I make the cake, I replace the cloves with cinnamon or apple pie spice, both of which are more to my liking. This version of the cake is made with self-rising flour. If you prefer to use the all-purpose variety, you'll need to add 1-1/4 teaspoons baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon of salt for every cup of flour called for in the recipe. This is a very moist cake that is wonderful when it is served hot from the oven. The good news, however, stops there. The cake does not age well and it gets soggy if it is allowed to sit too long. While the cake is traditionally served with unwhipped cream, I prefer to serve it with a scoop of good vanilla ice cream. The cake is a nice way to finish to a traditional Irish meal. If you are looking for something different to serve for dessert on St.Patrick's Day, you might want to give this recipe a try. Here's how the cake is made.
Irish Apple Cake...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite
2 cups self-rising flour
1 teaspoon ground cloves or cinnamon
1 pinch salt
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
3-4 cooking apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided use
2 lightly beaten eggs, room temperature
3 tablespoon milk
1 tablespoon granulated sugar (for topping)
1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease an 8-inch springform pan and line bottom with parchment paper. Grease paper.
2) Sift flour, salt, and ground cloves or cinnamon into a large bowl.
3) Cut in butter until the mixture has the consistency of fine crumbs.
4) Add sliced apples and sugar to flour mixture.
5) Stir in eggs and milk and mix with hands to coat apples with batter.
6) Turn dough into prepared pan. Sprinkle with remaining sugar. Bake 45 minutes, or until crisp and golden in color. Transfer pan to a cooling rack and let sit for 10 minutes. Release sides of springform pan. Serve warm with lightly whipped cream or ice cream. Yield: 8 servings.
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