Grandma Harriet's Old-Fashioned Apple Cake

Grandma Harriet’s Old-Fashioned Apple Cake

My dad’s girlfriend’s niece is Lauryn Cohen, otherwise known as Bella Baker. Lauryn has recently written a fantastic book(azine) called Sweet Gifts, (on sale at Barnes & Noble, Target, Walmart, Costco, CVS and more) which contains 95 amazing holiday desserts and crafts. Included in the book is this recipe which was given to her by her grandmother Harriet, which was given to her by HER grandmother! I can see why it’s a family recipe passed down through the generations. It’s simple to make, doesn’t have a lot of ingredients, is incredible tasting, and looks amazing and impressive! I didn’t start preparing the dessert until after the Christmas dinner was eaten, giving us time to digest, and allowing me to serve it fresh and hot, straight from the oven.

Lauryn’s original recipe calls for this to be made in a 9×13 glass dish, which I didn’t have, so I used a 9-inch round pie plate instead. It looked more like an apple pie than an apple cake.

1 tbsp cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
3 pounds apples (macintosh or corland), peeled, cored and sliced into medium-sized wedges
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9×13 glass baking dish. Mix the cinnamon and the 1/4 cup of sugar together and sprinkle half of the mixture onto the sliced apple wedges in a bowl; reserve the rest. Set aside the bowl and allow the apples to reach room temperature. In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
Beat together the butter and sugar on medium speed. Add the eggs and continue to beat thoroughly. Reduce mixer to low speed and gradually add the flour mixture.
Divide the dough in half. Make sure your hands are well floured and gently pat half of the dough into the baking dish. Press half of the dough into the bottom of the baking dish, making sure the dough is distributed evenly across the dish. Pour the apples on top of the dough and spread them evenly across the dish. Finally, break the remaining dough into pieces, flatten each piece between the palms of your hands, and lay the pieces over the top of the apples in a patchwork of dough, covering as much of the apples as possible. Sprinkle the remaining cinnamon-sugar mixture over the top of the cake.
Bake for 1 hour or until bubbling and golden brown on top. Remove from oven and let cool before slicing into squares. Makes 16-20 pieces.

This recipe is also available on Lauryn’s blog.

note: parts if the crust look a little burnt in the picture. They didn’t taste burnt, but as I used the wrong size dish, the pie was piled higher than it should be and got a little dark during cooking. Next time, I will cover it loosely with foil towards the end or lower the temperature or oven shelf, and keep an eye on it. 

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