We live a very seasonal rhythm when it comes to our lives and everything within it; from our home education to the foods that nourish us, the literature we consume, and what we celebrate. After a wonderful spring and summer, one where we welcomed our baby boy into our family, autumn felt like the perfect moment to settle back into our normal rhythms.
Autumn brings with it many wonderful adventures, including apple and pumpkin picking. My grandad always has a wonderful apple crop and this year was no different. H (our toddler), had so much fun with her great-grandad picking his apple crop, some of which we were able to bring home for ourselves. We decided to make something fun with our apples, and instead of cooked or stewed apple, we decided that a warm apple cake was perfect.
From humble beginnings
A friend had pointed us in the direction of a perfect, seasonal apple cake, the Vegan Apple cake from BBC Good Food. It was a wonderful way to use up the apples we had picked and started us on bit of a journey into creating the perfect cake for our little family.
We aren’t a vegan family, so although a few times we made the vegan recipe, we were able to switch the ingredients around with ease, preferring organic grass-fed butter to highly processed spreads. We’re extremely conscious of the health benefits around food and keen proponents of nutrition and bioavalibility of our nutrients and the best places to get them from, including animal products which are, for all intents and purposes demonized with sensationalist headlines and a heavy agenda (but that’s a discussion for another day maybe…). What we’ve found is that actually, the ingredients in this recipe are very interchangeable, making this a really versatile base recipe. From there we’ve done so much with it:
- Switched our processed spreads for organic grass fed butter.
- Switch plant based milk for the dairy alternative.
- Used vanilla flavouring instead of almond.
- Used a mix of apples and pears.
- Added additional flavourings of mixed spice and cinnamon.
Apples & Pears into a cake
The recipe itself is easy and very simple to make with ingredients most of us have in our cupboards. What I love too is that there is nothing in it like eggs (so great for allergy sufferers), so less worry about ending up with raw mixture after cooking. It is also great for little helping hands that like to lick the spoon. It’s so easy to make, regardless of your dietary choices.
- 300 ml Whole milk, any suitable milk will work
- 150 g Organic grass-fed butter, any suitable spread will work
- 1 tbsp Freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 350 g Self raising flour
- 100 g Golden Caster Sugar
- 100 g Golden soft sugar
- 1 tsp Baking powder
- 1 tbsp Vanilla Essence
- 200 g Pink lady apples, Any sweet apple will work
- 200 g Sweet Pears
- 2 tbsp Mixed Spice
- 2 tbsp Cinnamon
- Pour the 300ml into a jug and add 1 tbsp of lemon juice to thicken for 5 minutes at room temperature.
- Add self raising flour, both sugars and baking powder into a bowl and mix together.
- Pour over the thickened milk and hand whisk until smooth.
- Add 1 tbsp of vanilla essence and add to the mixture.
- Take the butter and melt in microwave (or on hob). Add to mixture and mix until smooth.
- Take the apples and pears, and cut into cubes. Place them in a separate bowl and cover in 1 tbsp of cinnamon and 1 tbsp of mixed spice. Mix together until all apples and pears are coated.
- Add the further 1 tbsp of cinnamon and 1 tbsp of mixed spice to the mixture and whisk together.
- Add the coated apples and pears and fold gently through the mixture.
- Grease a tin with the leftovers of the melted butter and pour mixture into the tin.
- Cook in centre of oven for 45 mins - 1 hour on 200 degrees celcius.
Read below to find our amazing spiced apple and pear cake, with all the additions and changes that I think you will love as much as we do.
This recipe is so simple, seasonal and tastes incredible. I hope you love it as much as we do. If you try it, please let me know in the comments or tag me on Instagram.