Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Apples, apples and an Apple Cider Bundt Cake Recipe

I can always tell that Fall has arrived when apple cider becomes available locally. It has a way of inspiring me to get into the kitchen and embrace the sweet and spicy flavors of colder days.

My husband starts making trips up north to pick up fresh pressed apple cider from an apple orchard near Eugene. A few trips, the kids and I have gone and watched the process. It is very messy and very interesting to watch. Fresh apple cider doesn't have as long of a shelf life as the cider available en mass right now in stores. It is simple, amazing and naturally sweet.

We have a small orchard of apples, but not enough to press for cider. I have used a few of our fresh picked apples in my juicer with pretty good success. My Omega is a masticating juicer and it results in a closer to pressed flavor and murkiness.

Call me strange, I love the real apple sediment in cider. 

I had hoped to take the kids out to pick the last apples off our trees, but the weather has been so wet and miserable, instead I have been sitting it out at home. My kids love the mud, but I don't care for all the after trip clean up. If you get a chance to visit an orchard this season, do. It is a great yearly tradition that kids always love. It also makes for some great photo opportunities.

Besides enjoying cider cold, or warmed up with cinnamon, I also love good quality cider for baking. This year I promised myself that I would reduce down enough for turnovers and apple pie. Have you seen the cost of boiled cider flavoring? So easy to make at home, in the crock pot. Just aim to reduce the cider down by at least half.

Well, today I felt like it was bundt cake weather and I was in the mood to bake.

I started out with a cup of fresh apple cider, a cinnamon stick and 2 peeled and diced apples.

I can't even tell you the type of apple I used. I actually have a bag of assorted baking apples in the kitchen. I grabbed two different varieties and set to dicing.

I simmered the apples just to soften them a little. I want them to be juicy, sweet pools in my cake. I still want to preserve a little of their texture.

The cake was pretty standard, but the warmed apples and cider added the perfect flavor kick to make it fun and perfect for the season.

Moist, flavorful and easy to make, I think this Apple Cider Bundt Cake will be a winner with your family, too! Just be sure to cut yourself a small slice right away. For testing purposes, of course.

Apple Cider Bundt Cake

You Will Need:

  • 2 medium baking apples, peeled, cored and diced small
  • 1 c. fresh apple cider
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 c. whole milk
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. dark brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/4 c. canola oil
  • 1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. cake flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. cloves
  • cinnamon and sugar for topping the bundt cake

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, grease a bundt pan and set it aside.

In a small saucepan combine the diced apple, apple cider and cinnamon stick. Let this simmer for 5 minutes. I like the apple chunks to be tender but not falling apart. Take off the heat and set aside.

In a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugars. Add the eggs one at a time and incorporate fully before adding the next one. Mix in the oil.

In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the dry ingredients.

Quickly whisk the milk into the apple mixture, so it doesn't curdle. Add half to the mixer and incorporate. Then add half the flour and alternate again with the remaining apple mixture. Pour this into your bundt pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. A toothpick will come out clean.

Let the bundt cake stand for 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack. All it to cool completely, then wrap it in plastic wrap and allow it to sit for several hours, or overnight before serving.

To serve, dust with a little cinnamon and sugar on top.

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