Apple, Olive Oil and Wildflower Honey Cake

Apple Cake Dripping with Honey by Dena T Bray
Trees At Dusk by Dena T Bray

The light. The colors of autumn.  The love and support of family and friends all came together for me in positive, joy filled ways yesterday.

I’ve been practicing yoga for years. I embrace the postures, the forms, the philosophy, but the notion of a hand stand―any arm balance―has been fraught with fear. Still, I enjoy watching others playful with the pose, but never thought it would be mine. When my yoga teacher suggested we move to handstands in class yesterday, I didn’t run out of the room as is my norm. Rather, much to my surprise, I simply went up on my hands! It was a baby hand stand, spotted and supported by others, but a handstand it was!  It was fun and I have been tickled by the excitement of this little accomplishment, floating on air like the mist over the river this morning, ever since.

Mist On Connecticut River by Dena T Bray
Apple Cake on Plate with Apples and Wood by Dena T Bray

Perhaps it was my breakfast that put me in the mood for inversions―this Apple Cake with Olive Oil and Wildflower Honey. A light upside down confection―a cross between a traditional cake and a delicate pudding―is a fun addition to any fall baking repertoire. Published in Le Pain Quotidien Cookbook, I was enticed by the anticipation of the flavors of honey, apple and olive oil together, as well as by the nontraditional steps in the baking process. Fresh apple slices are placed in the bottom of the baking pan, then covered by a cake batter. About half way through the baking process, a custard of eggs and golden honey is added to the mix. The result is a rich, moist cake as suitable for breakfast on a chilly morning with hot coffee as it is for light dessert any night of the week. We ate it with fresh yogurt, Vermont cheddar cheese and apple slices. Delicious!

What joy came into your life today?

May your tomorrow be filled with sunshine and pleasure.

I look forward to seeing you in my kitchen, gathering flavors, soon.

Dena

Golden Apple Cake Slice with Flower by Dena T Bray

APPLE, OLIVE OIL & WILDFLOWER HONEY CAKE

Yield: 1 8-inch o

Ingredients:

  • 4 cooking apples, such as Granny Smith, Golden Delicious or Mutsu, peeled, cored and cut into 8-10 chunks
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 5 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 4 eggs
  • ⅔ cup wildflower honey
  • 1 small apple, thinly sliced, for garnish at serving (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and line an 8-inch cake pan with non-stick parchment paper, then place the apple pieces inside.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, olive oil, baking powder and two of the eggs, then pour the batter over the apples.
  3. Bake for 20 minutes, then remove from the oven. Increase the oven setting to 400 degrees F.
  4. Whisk the remaining 2 eggs with the wildflower honey, then pour this mixture over the cake. Return to the oven and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown and the tines of a fork inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  5. Remove the cake from the oven and turn out onto a plate while still warm.
  6. Slice and serve garnished with additional apple slices, if you like.
  7. Enjoy.

Notes:

  1. This recipe is from Le Pain Quotidien Cookbook. I have made a few slight changes. The original recipe called for lavender honey.
  2. Substitute any high quality honey for the lavender or wildflower honey.
  3. I like this for breakfast with coffee, a few slices of Vermont cheddar cheese and homemade yogurt. It is equally good for dessert alone or with ice cream, crème fraîche or whipped cream.
  4. Substitute fresh pears for  the apples, or use a combination of both for a delicious variation.

Apple Honey Cake in Pan by Dena T Bray
Two Vintage Apple Cakes by Dena T Bray