What do you get if you cross a crumble with a cake? Why crumble cake of course! This is a subtly spiced dark winter version of your classic apple crumble, made with sweet woody cinnamon, treacly dark muscovado sugar and a healthy wholemeal crumb. If you'd like to make a sweeter summer version of this cake which would rise more, then just swop the wholemeal flour with plain flour, and the muscovado with caster sugar. It's one of those cakes that helps me work through our glut of autumnal garden apples and smells incredible as it bakes in the oven. I've made this crumble cake in advance to take to some friends who we'll be supping with this weekend, so there are no photos of the cut cake or cake slices, sorry.
Inspired by a recipe given on the Waitrose website. See their recipe here.
for the base:
3 eggs, room temperature
170g dark muscovado sugar
150g wholemeal flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
170g unsalted butter, room temperature
1 tablespoon runny honey
1 tablespoon milk, optional
for the apples:
3 eating apples, not too sweet
1 or 2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
for the crumble topping:
85g caster sugar and/or dark muscovado sugar,
85g wholemeal or plain flour
60g rolled oats
85g unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1. Turn the oven to 180C (160C fan oven). Grease and line a 20cm/23cm round spring form cake tin. Get out 2 small bowls and 1 large mixing bowl.
2. Peel, and slice the apples thinly, then scatter them with 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and set to one side in the first small bowl.
3. In the second bowl, mix together the crumble ingredients by hand, until the mixture has the consistency of breadcrumbs. Put to one side.
4. In the third, largest bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together thoroughly for approx 10-15 minutes.
You need to get it to the point where the eggs and sugar have paled and leave a trail when you lift the whisk.
5. While the eggs and sugar are whisking, melt the butter over a low heat. Let the butter cool slightly before gently folding it into the pale frothy eggs and sugar with a wooden spoon. If you stir too violently at this point you'll prevent the batter from rising in the oven, so gentleness is the key.
6. Next sieve the wholemeal flour and baking powder into the batter, again stirring very gently with a wooden spoon. Add the raisins and honey, and stir until just combined.
7. Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin. Carefully place the apple slices over the batter, and finish off by scattering the crumble mixture over the top of the cake.
8. Bake in the oven for approx 50-55 minutes. Check it after 45 minutes, and if the crumble is browning too quickly then cover the top of the cake with a sheet of kitchen foil before putting in the oven to continue baking.
9. You 'll know the cake is baked when a skewer comes out clean. Leave it to cool in the cake for 15 minutes before placing onto a wire rack or plate. Serve warm with vanilla icecream or cold with some cream.
This cake was idly baked while listening to Peter Pears singing Winter Words by Benjamin Britten