Afternoon Delight

There’s a buzz around here. And while it’s normally a good thing, this time it’s got us feeling worried, vexed and sympathetic.

Wherever you’re from, you’ve probably heard about the volcanic eruption in Iceland. Already scary because it is a mighty large volcano, it’s now made worse when tens of thousands are stranded, unable to leave countries because of the heavy smoggy skies plagued by volcanic ashes. The only upside to this is that my sister will be home for a few more days until the airlines can reschedule her a flight back to school. But, it’s probably a halfway up sort of upside, since exams were nearing for her and she wanted to go back to revise.

But onto something lighter, we had a different sort of Saturday today. Not spending it at the malls doing our routine ‘power-walk’, desperately avoiding crowds (if even possible), we had a summery lunch at my uncle’s featuring my grandma’s cooking followed by dessert, dessert and more dessert. See! This appreciation of sugar is genetic.

I just had to bake something from my Ottolenghi cookbook which I haven’t had the chance to break into yet. So, what do you do with a craving for apples? Bake apple cake with maple cream cheese frosting, gluten free of course! Fluffy, tender, full of fruit happiness yet rich enough from the cream cheese to put a big fat smile on your face. It’s Ottolenghi afterall! Oh, and if you’re in love with the plate from the first photo, it’s my aunt’s. And trust me when I tell you she has the nicest collection of pretty chinawear! Tea party worthy!

Apple and Raisin Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting (adapted from The Ottolenghi Cookbook)

80g raisins
4 tbsp water
2 cups – 1 tbsp GF flour blend
1 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp bicarb soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup canola oil (original: olive oil, but I don’t like the taste)
100g brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
3.5 granny smith apples, peeled, cored and diced into 1cm cubes
grated zest of 1 lemon
2 egg whites
2 tbsp caster sugar + 1/4 tsp cream of tartar

1) Preheat oven to 180 degreesC. Spray a 8 inch square/round baking tin with baking spray. Line with baking paper, allowing an ‘overhang’ over the sides. This facilitates the removal process.

2) Place the raisins and the water in a medium saucepan, simmering until for 15 mins or until most of the water has been absorbed. Leave to cool.

3) Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.

4) In a large mixing bowl, whisk the oil and sugar until well mixed. Add in the eggs, whisk until thick and smooth. Add in the vanilla, apples, raisins and lemon zest. Mixture will seem incredibly thick.

5) Fold in the flour mix until homogeneous.

6) In the bowl of a KitchenAid, whisk the egg whites until foamy. Gradually add in the caster sugar + cream of tartar mixture, and whisk until stiff but not dry peaks form.

7) Gently fold into the apple batter. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 1 hour and 20-30 mins, or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.

8) Once completely cooled, remove from baking tin and slice into half horizontally. Spread half of the frosting on the bottom layer, cover the with top layer and spread with remaining frosting. If not eating immediately, refrigerate. Let the cake come to room temperature before chowing down!

Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

100g unsalted butter, softened
70g brown sugar
85ml maple syrup (the real deal, not imitation ones!)
250g cream cheese, room temperature.

1) In the bowl of a KitchenAid, beat the butter, sugar and syrup until well mixed. Add in the cream cheese and beat until fluffy and no lumps are visible. It will take awhile, mine did, but sooo worth it!



Filed under Books, Breakfast, Cakes, Frostings, Fruit, Recipes

17 responses to “Afternoon Delight

  1. I could spend the whole afternoon munching on this cake! Love the dessert plate.

  2. Shirley@gfe

    Oh, so many wonderful goodies here! That sugar gene runs in our family, too. The maple syrup in the icing is simple brilliance. :-)


  3. This sounds decadently delicious…might have to save this one for special occasions!

  4. yes because of the volcano I have cancelled my trip to Turkey with my whole family !! I would have needed your cake fro comfort !! Pierre

  5. vicky! it’s as if you knew precisely what i’m obsessed with right now! i’ve been applying maple syrup and extract to just about everything, and that cake is an ideal vehicle for some cream cheesy maple goodness. lovely recipe indeed.

  6. Good luck to your sister getting back! I know you must be happy that she’s stranded :P but I can imagine how stressed she is. I would be flipping. Out.

    This cake looks delicious! I am always in the midst of an apple craving and that maple cream cheese frosting sounds divine. As soon as fall rolls around here…this is what I will be making.

  7. How have I lived my life, what I assumed to be a full and vibrant life, without ever trying maple cream cheese icing? :P Seriously it sounds amazing!

  8. Ah well, you can’t fight genetics. And if you can’t beat it, join it, right?

    The only thing better than cream cheese frosting is maple cream cheese frosting. Great recipe :)

  9. What a fabulous dessert plate! And it’s perfect with your cake. ( I know I’m supposed to say you cake is perfect on the plate.)
    I love maple anything and can’t wait to make the frosting…it would be great on any cake.

    I spent a couple days this week working on a gluten free lemon cake…ended up making it three different ways. It called for potato flour which I thought smelled awful, although you couldn’t taste it in the cake. Anyway, I’m going to post it this week sometime and would love your opinion on it.

  10. this look delightful!

  11. Thanks for enlightening us on the plate, it caught my attention right when the picture finished loading—prettyful! And the maple cream cheese frosting sounds delicious, i love maple syrup on anything!

  12. dessert, dessert and more dessert is a common theme in my household too :) and as usual, your baking looks superb. I want a slice of this!

  13. Vicky, I like the way that you write ;] But yes, it is a scary thought, how a volcano has erupted and is affecting people across the globe in different ways. Events like these are linking people together in its impact…

    Besides this, your cake looks like absolute yum. I want to have a tea party, I still have an unused tea set.

    And regarding your hair-cutting, if you haven’t it, I say that you should go for it. If you can rock short hair, it’s awesome, short hair on women is awesome.

  14. This is a great recipe I would try…. and yes, your aunt has a great artistic sense in collecting tea set…

    And most of all, I hope you have a fantabulous holiday in Bali next week :-) (You should be having lunch or dinner at Warung Made in Kuta. It is my fav!!) The weather in Jakarta was good so I bet that would be the same for Bali…

    Happy holiday, Vick!!

    Sawadee from Bangkok,

  15. This is my kind of cake, seriously! Recently I almost made a cake just like this, but settled on my favorite carrot cake, this makes me want to revisit that flavor of spice cake with cream cheese frosting!

  16. Adeline

    Hi Vicky :)
    I chanced upon your website and thought it was great! I didn’t know we had such gluten-free blogs in Singapore. I am in the midst of changing my diet to become gluten-free and would like to know where I can source for gluten-free flours etc.

  17. Maple cream cheese icing sounds divine. Will try to make it for some plain scones I’m planning on baking this weekend x

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