Today is another wonderful cool fall day here in Delaware! It may be raining but it is also cool and breezy! I know that fall doesn't officially start until later this month but the leaves on the trees are just beginning to change color and that means Halloween is coming and the holiday season is approaching! On days like this when I can't get outside to be in the garden, I love to bake! One of my family's favorite cakes is an apple cake that I found on about.com - Southern Food a couple of years ago. A lady named Mare shared the recipe on the about.com forum. Thank you, Mare wherever you are!
Whenever I take it to a family function, I never bring any of it home with me. I have a niece and nephew in college at the University of Delaware (Go Blue Hens!) and they always take big chunks of the cake back to their dorms with them. The cake calls for 1 1/2 cups of walnuts that I omit since I am allergic to walnuts, so if you want to add them - fold them in after the dry ingredients have been incorporated into the batter. I serve this cake at Thanksgiving as part of the main meal as it goes great with ham and sweet potatoes and at this time of year, I try to use fresh-picked apples from a local orchard!
Preheat your oven to 325F
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups corn oil
5 cups peeled and diced apples (or 5 large apples, peeled and diced)
2 tsp. vanilla
3 cups unsifted flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp cinnamon
Cream together the sugar and corn oil, then add the 3 eggs, one at a time. Add the 5 diced apples to the creamed mixture and mix well. Add the vanilla and then the dry ingredients. The batter will be thick and somewhat stiff.
Bake in a greased and floured 13 x 9" pan for around 70-75 minutes (the recipe says 60 minutes but the cake has never been ready at 60 minutes for me) depending on your oven. Remove from the oven and then while still VERY warm, pour on a powdered sugar icing consisting of 1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar and 1/4 cup milk. If necessary, add more powdered sugar or milk to bring it to a 'drizzle' consistency.
I have changed the recipe a bit and add the apples to the batter before the dry ingredients are added. I think it gives the cake an even more moist taste. It will take over an hour to bake this wonderful concoction since you have to bake it at such a low temperature, but wait until you taste it! The addition of the icing to the very warm cake makes a kind of a 'crust' over the top of the cake that is hard to resist! This cake takes a little over 10 minutes to put together, unless you peel and dice the apples by hand - like I do - I hate wasting water to clean out my food processor for something so easy to chop up! Oh, and don't worry about scented candles on a day when you bake this cake! You will have the wonderful smell of cinnamon, cloves and apples in your home all day!
I have made this cake so many times that I no longer need the recipe! It never lasts past the first day and even here at home with just my immediate family - it is gone by bedtime. My son takes it with to his yearly holiday party at work and it has now become a staple at that party, too!
It is starting to rain here again - so I am off to the kitchen to bake an apple cake!