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Vanilla Apple Cake

This month’s Sweet & Simple Bakes event , created by Rosie, of Rosie Bakes a ‘Peace” of Cake and Maria, of The Goddess’s Kitchen, called us to make a Vanilla Apple cake. The recipe was simple, straightforward, a few ingredients and this time I followed the recipe as much as I could.

To start with I do not have a 20 cm springform tin, so I used my 26 cm tin which made a cake less high than it should be. I did not have demerara sugar so I used caster sugar instead and starking apples.

The only change I made to the recipe was instead of adding all the apples on top, I used 1 1/2 apples on the base of the tin, on which I sprinkled some sugar and cinnamon, I emptied the batter on top and I put the remaining apples on top with some sugar and cinnamon. My batter was so shallow that I could not poke the apples half way in, as instructed by Maria.

However the cake rose and covered the apples perfectly.

When it cooled, I turned it into a cake server, upside down.

Instead of serving the apple cake dry, I prepared a caramel syrup, which I poured on top of each serving with some crushed pecans on top.

The taste was absolutely amazing. My children loved it and could eat it all at once if I did not prevent them from eating it all.

Butter vs Margarine

Until recently, I have rarely used butter in my cakes and always used margarine. I know that the taste is by far better with butter but what do you think about this? Do we sacrifice health for taste or vice versa?

How often do you use butter? I want to hear your views regarding this subject.


250g/9oz unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
250g/9oz golden caster sugar (or normal caster sugar)
4 eggs, beaten
250g/9oz self-raising flour
1 vanilla pod, split, seeds removed and reserved (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
3 small Bramley apples, peeled, cored and cut into wedges (or any other type of cooking apple, if not apple of your choice)
2 tbsp Demerara sugar
¼ tsp ground cinnamon

For caramel syrup

1/2 cup of sugar

2 spoonfuls of lemon juice

a few spoonfuls of water until the sugar gets wet

1 tsp margarine

a few spoonfuls of light cream or milk

Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Butter a 20cm/8inch springform tin, then line the base with baking paper.

Beat the caster sugar and butter together until the mixture turns pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, flour and vanilla seeds, then beat together quickly to make a smooth batter. Tip into the prepared tin, then lay the apple wedges on top, poking them halfway into the mix. Don’t worry if the apples appear crowded – they’ll shrink as they cook. Sprinkle with the Demerara and cinnamon, then bake for 1 hour 5 mins, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean and the sponge is risen and golden.

Leave to cool for a few minutes, then release the tin and cool the cake completely on a wire rack.

Preparing the syrup

In a non stick frying pan add sugar and wet it with water, add lemon juice and stir until it turns brown.

Remove from the heat and mix in the margarine and the cream.

I did not measure how much cream I added but I would say around 5 – 6 spoonfuls and if you add less or more I don’t see any problem, so long as it retains it’s dark colour. Mix for a few seconds and serve on top of the cake.

This morning I had an e-mail from a friend saying that she could not open my site and when I checked it she was right. There was no site. Although until late in the evening the site was running perfectly, I do not know why it collapsed. I contacted my hosting company who have found out the problem and after a couple of hours we managed to restore the problem. The whole problem nearly gave me a stroke and made me think that I would have lost at least one month’s hard work.

I tried to find out how I can back up my data and although it seems quite complicated, I shall devote as long time as necessary to learn how to do this. Does any one of you know an easy way to do this?

After writing the post I found out that all my links are not working either and I need to resolve that problem as well.

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33 Responses

  1. Delicious looks cake. I love that you served it with the syrup.
    Yeah somtimes when i bake, i also don’t have the correct pan and then i too improvise.

  2. I love all kinds of apple cakes, especially teacakes! Nice touch with the caramel sauce too. Your site seems to be working fine and the links look like they’re working too. (is there a way to stop that music player from playing automatically?)

  3. Apple cake is very seasonal right now sis. I agree with Peter, your site seems to be working fine now. Perhaps it was just a glitch in WordPress at the time:D

  4. The cake looks very moist and these flavours are fitting for autumn.

  5. Oh my god, Ivy…. could you adopt me, please? I can behave as a kid… could you adopt me? What a marvellous tart!!!! Gosh, and I still have to start baking. Well, if the sky doesn’t fall on my head, I will start this week with something simple ;D

  6. Cake in between apple layers is a nice idea.
    I make a spiced apple cake which I have posted on my blog.
    And as you can see, Ivy, your blog seems to be back to normal.

  7. Oh this sounds just perfect…what a wonderful treat 🙂

  8. That is one heaven of a cake! The lucky tummies who got to eat it. I envy them!

  9. Ivy, now that’s apple cake with a twist! I can even smell the caramel too! I also want to thank you so much for the award. You really made my day!

    Núria count me in too… I’m like an angel when comes to food..hahahhaa.

    About butter vs margarine… firstly, they (the specialists) warned consumers that butter is bad, real, real bad for health. Now, they said butter is good compared to margarine! I feel that just because butter is an animal product, it contains cholesterol and margarine is non-animal product, doesn’t have. Therefore, margarine supposed to be better. I do know butter is excellent source of fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamin A, D, E, K and it’s natural product. These are not found to any degree in margarine. Margarine is chemical-extracted refined vegetable oil, contains trans-fatty acids which raise LDL levels.

    Due to the recent research and issuance of warnings and regulations about trans fatty acids, many margarine manufacturers had reformulated their products. Is compulsory that food manufacturers disclose on food labels how much trans fats (monounsaturated or polyunsaturated) a product contains (eg chips, crackers,etc) In my country, I saw lately, several brands of potato chips had ‘No Trans Fat’ indicated on their packaging.

    In my family, we used butter more. I don’t use margarine in my baking or cooking either. If I have to buy margarine, it must be olive based. One of my friends who visits me frequently can’t take canola, nuts and seed based margarines. It caused inflame to her arthritis problems.

    Overall, general rule of thumb, everything should be in moderation. We need to read labels of our food more diligent nowadays and to teach our young generations as well.

  10. Lovely cake – we enjoyed it as well – I’ve made it thrice this month and it was a huge hit each time.

  11. Ivy

    Hi everybody. I’m sorry if I gave you a hard time today with my site. The problems seem to have been resolved (I am keeping my fingers crossed).

    Pixen thanks for all the information given. Well, I’ll have to wait until my next check up and see were the levels of my cholesterol are.

  12. Cake looks moist n delicious.

  13. What a perfect cake! Some of my very favorite flavours in there.

  14. Ivy, what a great looking cake! I love apple in baked goods, and haven’t made an apple cake in ages. I’ll definitely be trying this out. Yum!

    a.k.a. The Hungry Mouse

  15. heart n soul

    apple-caramel-pecan, killer combination!
    PS: I try to bake healthier cakes, without butter eggs and sugar, when it’s a cake for family consumption and I know I’ll have loads. I use organic oil or organic non-dairy margerine without hydrogenated fats, fruit and natural sugars (eg agave syrup, mollasses, maple, honey etc) When it’s a special occasion and I know lots of people are going to share the cake so we’ll only have a slice each, then I can indulge with naughty ingredients like cream, butter, caramel etc

  16. heart n soul

    oh, and I DO toast the pecans, the flavour is worth it!:)

  17. A delicious looking cake! Very flavorful tasting!



  18. hi Ivy
    Love the way you used the apple slices in the cake.
    What more with pecan and caramel topping … I think you cake is to just yummylicious 🙂

  19. Dee

    Ivy, doesn’t this cake look amazing? I really wanted to participate but life had other ideas… I’m going to give it a go when I have a little more time for niceties for sure. Thank you for your kind words 🙂

  20. Delicious Ivy – I love the idea of the caramel syrup on top to complement the apples.

  21. THe cake looks amazing … we went apple picking with the kids a week ago and I have 25 pounds of apples to work with!! I’ve laready made apple pies and apple crisp (which I’m planning to post about) and I was looking for a good apple upside down cake — I just found it!
    Pineapple upside down cake and peach upside down cakes are also really good …

  22. Ivy your Vanilla Apple Cake looks so delicious and I love the caramel syrup topping you’ve added to this wonderful recipe!

    Thanks for taking part in this months bake and hope you will join us again.


  23. Ivy, that cake looks so good!!!

    As for butter vs. margarine…margarine does not naturally occur. It needs to be processed. For that reason I think that butter is better. Less ingredients and less processing is always better!!!

  24. natalia

    Ciao ! I love your variation, I love the tarte tatin-like idea and the syrup too ! I always use butter because it’s good and margarina (?)is not healty better a little less but good !

  25. Ivy your cake really is stunning and a most wonderful bake – well done 😀

    Many thanks to you for partaking in this month’s bake and I hope you will join us again 🙂

    Hugs Rosie x

  26. Great-looking cake. I like the addition of the caramel syrup. I’m a bit unclear about the margarine/butter debate. I, too, always thought margarine was better for you, but have been hearing more recently that it’s not. It sounds like there are pros and cons for each. More recently, I’ve been using more butter in my baking. Pixen’s comment is helpful.

  27. Ivy

    Thanks everybody for your lovely comments.

    Thanks also for telling me the pros and cons of butter vs margarine. I have not yet made up my mind what to be using. Although I use an olive oil based margarine still butter is very tasteful and so long as it’s not every day I can enjoy some once in a while.

  28. Jee, your cake looks scrumptous and inviting. Am drolling all over your recipe and cant make up my mind yet to move on 😉

  29. It looks wonderful! I really like it with caramel and nuts.

  30. Your cake looks great and I love the caramel syrup and pecans on top. A nice little variation you’ve added :]

  31. This cake is simply delicious.

  32. PG

    You know I tried your recipe of the caramel syrup with my own apple cake. It came out so good. Thanks a lot for the recipe! a very tempting cake though. Will be posting it soon on my blog.

  33. The cake looks delicious, Ivy! I saw PG’s blog and the caramel sauce looks good too. Will try that topping on one of my cakes soon!