APPLE WALNUT BUNDT CAKE
This is the perfect apple cake for the fall season, but it can be enjoyed any time of the year. It is great to have this Bundt cake in your repertoire as it is easy to make and stays moist and flavorful for 5 days at room temperature, up to 10 days refrigerated. Because it is made with oil, it can be enjoyed at room temperature or cold. The caramel glaze is an optional but fabulous accompaniment.
SERVES 12 to 14
OVEN TEMPERATURE: 350°F/175°C
BAKING TIME: 50 to 60 minutes
BAKING EQUIPMENT: The pan must be a minimum 12 cup capacity, such as a Nordic Ware Anniversary Bundt Pan with 10 to 15 cup capacity, or a 12 cup Bundt pan, coated with baking spray with flour; or a 16 cup two-piece angel food pan, bottom lined with parchment, then coated with baking spray with flour
150 grams or ½ cup plus 1½ tablespoons (140 ml) 3 large eggs
100 grams or 1 cup walnut halves
300 grams or 2½ cups (lightly spooned into the cup and leveled off) bleached all-purpose flour
5.5 grams or 1 teaspoon baking soda
6 grams or 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
4.4 grams or 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
525 grams (diced) or 4 cups (diced) 4 large tart apples (see page xxv), 657 grams/1½ pounds
269 grams or 1¼ cups (296 ml) canola or safflower oil
200 grams or 1 cup granulated sugar
163 grams or ¾ cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons (10 ml) or pure vanilla extract
PREHEAT THE OVEN
Twenty minutes or longer before toasting the walnuts, set an oven rack in the lower third of the oven. Set the oven at 350ºF/175ºC.
MISE EN PLACE
Thirty minutes to 1 hour ahead, set the eggs on the counter at room temperature (65º to 75ºF/19º to 24ºC).
TOAST AND CHOP THE WALNUTS:
Spread the walnuts evenly on a cookie sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Turn the walnuts onto a clean dish town and roll and rub them around to loosen the skins. Discard any loose skins and let the nuts cool completely. Chop medium coarse.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
Peel, core, and cut the apples into ¹⁄8 to ¼ inch dice.
MAKE THE BATTER
Into the bowl of a stand mixer, weigh or measure the eggs. Add the oil, granulated and brown sugars, and the vanilla. Attach the flat beater and beat on medium speed for 1 minute, until blended.
Add the flour mixture and beat on low speed for 20 seconds, just until incorporated.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Detach the bowl from the stand and with a large spoon stir in the apples and walnuts. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan.
BAKE THE CAKE
Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a wire cake tester inserted near the center comes out clean and the cake springs back when pressed lightly in the center.
COOL THE CAKE
Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 30 minutes. If using a straight sided pan, run a metal spatula between the sides of the pan and the cake. Invert the cake onto a wire rack that has been lightly coated with nonstick cooking spray and cool completely for about 1½ hours.
STORE AIRTIGHT: room temperature, 5 days; refrigerated, 10 days; frozen, 2 months.
Make This Recipe Your Own: Drizzle Caramel Sauce and Glaze (recipe below) over the cake after unmolding.
Note on Apples:
APPLES: For baking it is best to choose tart apples with a low water content so that they hold their shape after softening on baking. If a recipe calls for several apples, it is great to use a combination. Some of my favorites are Macoun, Rhode Island Greening, Empire, and Cortland. To get perfect slices for a galette, cut the apple in half and use a melon baller to remove the core.
CARAMEL SAUCE AND GLAZE
Satiny and pleasingly sticky, caramel is one of the most delicious additions to cakes and pastries. The longer the caramel cooks, the darker and less sweet it becomes. You can judge the color by eye or with an accurate instant-read thermometer. Cream of tartar and corn syrup both help prevent crystallization in the finished caramel sauce.
MAKES 300 GRAMS/ 1 CUP/ 237 ML GLAZE
28 grams or 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
87 grams or ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons (89 ml) heavy cream
200 grams or 1 cup sugar, preferably superfine
41 grams or 2 tablespoons (30 ml) corn syrup
⅜ teaspoon cream of tartar (optional)
59 grams or ¼ cup (59 ml) water
2 teaspoons (10 ml) pure vanilla extract
MISE EN PLACE
About 30 minutes ahead, cut the butter into a few pieces and set it on the counter at room temperature (65º to 75ºF/19º to 24ºC).
Into a 1 cup glass measure with a spout, weigh or measure the cream. Heat in the microwave until hot, then cover it.
Have ready a 2 cup glass measure with a spout, lightly coated with nonstick cooking spray, near the cooktop.
MAKE THE SAUCE
In a heavy 6 cup saucepan, preferably nonstick, stir together the sugar, corn syrup, cream of tartar, if using, and water until all the sugar is moistened.
Heat, stirring constantly with a silicone spatula, until the sugar dissolves and the syrup is bubbling. Stop stirring and let it boil undisturbed until it turns a deep amber and the temperature reaches 370ºF/188ºC or a few degrees below, as the temperature will continue to rise. Remove it from the heat as soon as it reaches temperature.
Slowly and carefully pour the hot cream into the caramel. It will bubble up furiously.
Use a silicone spatula or wooden spoon to stir the mixture gently, scraping the thicker part that settles on the bottom.
Return it to a very low heat, continuing to stir gently for 1 minute, until the mixture is uniform in color and the caramel is fully dissolved.
Remove the caramel from the heat and gently stir in the butter until incorporated. The mixture will be a little streaky but will become uniform once cooled and stirred.
Pour the caramel into the prepared glass measure and let it cool for 3 minutes. Gently stir in the vanilla and let it to cool until room temperature and thickened, stirring it gently once or twice.
STORE AIRTIGHT: room temperature, 3 days; refrigerated, 1 month.
It is best to avoid making caramel on humid days.
Do not add cold cream to the hot caramel as it risks sputtering out of the pan.
APPLE WALNUT BUNDT CAKE and CARAMEL SAUCE AND GLAZE is excerpted from Rose’s Baking Basics © 2018 by Rose Levy Beranbaum. Photography © 2018 by Matthew Septimus. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.