I grew up baking with my mother and her mother, first as their helper. Then, when I was nine years old, one day my mother took out all of the ingredients for my grandmother’s chocolate pound cake, place the recipe card in front of me, and said, “Have fun, and please leave the kitchen exactly as you’ve found it.” (Which meant, it better be impossible to tell someone has been using the kitchen for anything!)
When had a family of my own, I baked every week, from old family recipe cards, for my children and baked treats for their class parties all through elementary school. I loved it. Baking brought me a great deal of pleasure and relieved stress. It was also a creative outlet.
Fast forward to last year when I married a fella who basically does not eat sweets because of sugar and carb content. BORING! (He has no health issues what-so-ever. He’s just super disciplined and careful because he’s a biochemist and his research centers around disease. 🙄)
Shortly after my marriage, two of my three daughters decided to go vegan. UGH! Talk about a double whammy let-down!
But, as my youngest said, this is just a challenge and I am always up for a good challenge!! As it turns out, it has been far easier to find recipes without refined sugar and wheat that actually taste good, and are not dry, than it has been to find vegan recipes that taste good. Both have required research and a lot of trial and error, plus creative thinking.
In the spirit of the season, I thought I’d share a delicious Apple Cake that happens to be vegan. You don’t have to be a vegan to eat this. It really tastes just like most any other apple cake I’ve made.
AUTUMNAL APPLE CAKE
For the batter:
2 cups flour (measure and sift twice!)
3 teaspoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of pink sea salt (or any salt)
1/4 cup of sugar
4 tablespoons of softened vegan butter (I use earth balance)
1/4 cup of unsweetened apple sauce (I use a very generous 1/4 c)
2/3 cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk
For the filling:
4-5 apples, peeled and sliced thin-ish (I use a mix of green and cortland apples)
For the topping:
2 tablespoons of white sugar
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
1 tablespoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of allspice
Preheat your oven to 375*
Generously grease a 8x8 baking pan
1) Mix together flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar.
2) Add butter, apple sauce and milk.
3) Mix until it is just combined. Be sure not to over mix. This makes the batter tough.
4) Press the dough into the prepared baking pan.
5) Place the apple slices one-by-one deep into the dough, with the rounded side up. The dough is going to rise up as it cook up, so make sure you press them down enough.
6) Sprinkle the top evenly with the sugar/spice mixture.
Make sure to place the pan on the middle oven rack.
Bake 35 mins. I always set my timer for five mins short of prescribed time because you just never know how your own oven cooks compared to others. I do cook this 35 mins.
Make sure to test with a toothpick.
Cool only slightly before serving. It’s very good with vanilla ice cream (vegan or regular!)