Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Apple Cake for Valentine's Day Children's Party

Fresh Apple Cake

My five year old is having a Valentine's Day party in her Kindergarten class today. Her teacher is very strict about the food that is served at her parties. She absolutely won't serve anything with chocolate - I've seen dismayed parents sent away with trays of homemade mini-brownies and chocolate chip cookies, rejected and untouched.

The Valentine's Day party stipulations were very clear - only healthy foods will be served - no candy!

I decided to go with apples and made two different recipes - Fresh Apple Cake from Joie Warner's Apple Desserts and Old English Cheese and Apple Loaf, a quick bread recipe from DK's Ulitimate Bread by Eric Treuille & Ursula Ferrigno. I'd made the Fresh Apple Cake before with great success--its a moist cake with a strong vanilla flavour, full of roughly chopped apples, sweet and rich, made with 1/2 cup butter and 3 eggs. It tastes like a cake my grandmother would have made. I skipped the chopped pecans which are sprinkled directly onto the buttered pan in this recipe.I used lemon zest this time instead of the lime zest called for in the recipe - the lime was better.

The cheese and apple loaf had immediate appeal to me because I love that particular combination of foods. The loaf was described as "moist and flavorful" with a "crunchy cheese crust". But the ratio of ingredients made me nervous. 3 1/2 cups of flour to 4 tablespoons of butter? I checked the recipe again. Well, there were 2 eggs, 4 oz of cheese and 4 grated apples. But I knew I was in trouble when the recipe called for me to "spoon the batter into the prepared pan". In my hand was a perfectly formed round dough, like a dry pastry dough. I flashed back to my first attempt at bread baking - the dough really didn't rise as described but I baked it anyway. The result - a brick. But, apparently none the wiser now, I went ahead and fitted my dough into the loaf pan and into the oven it went. After 1 1/2 hours of baking, the result was not as bad as I imagined.

It certainly had a crunchy cheese crust and, while dry, was not crumbling or inedible. Alas, you'd never guess there were apples in the recipe. There was a slight bitterness, but it was fine toasted with butter.

So I have yet to find a great quick bread, muffin or cake recipe that tastes of apples and cheese. If you have a good one, let me know.

Happily the fresh apple cake was a big hit with the kids...and the teacher.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi there,
congrats on your blog - any chance you could post the Fresh Apple Cake you mentioned that you've made before? Sounds wonderful.

8:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a very good chese and apple loaf recipe, it is as follows:
1tbsp oil to grease tin
500gr plain flour
1tbsp baking powder
1/2tsp salt
60gr butter
4 apples
125gr cheddar cheese
2 eggs beaten

rub in the butter to th sived flour+baking powder+salt until it resembles the texture of breadcrumbs.Stir in grated apples and cheese.Add beaten eggs. spoon into 1kg baking tin and bake for 1 1/2- 2 hours at 180c.

You could compare it to your recipe but my family thought it was great!

9:23 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home