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Lake Garda Apple Cake (Torta Di Mele)

Author/Submitted by: "Patricia Wells' Trattoria," by Patricia Wells, Submitted by Hilde Mott (2/1/95)
Servings: 12
Categories: Cakes / Desserts

    Unsalted butter AND All purpose flour for preparing the baking pan
8  tablespoons  Unsalted butter, at room temperature
1  cup  Vanilla sugar
1  teaspoon  Vanilla extract, pure
3  tablespoons  Whole milk
    Grated zest of 1 lemon
3  large  Eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2  cups  All purpose flour
3/4  teaspoon  Baking powder
1/4  teaspoon  Fine sea salt
1/2  teaspoon  Ground cinnamon
3    Golden delicious apples, (about 1 1/2 lbs)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Generously butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan, tapping out any excess flour. Set aside.

3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle, cream the butter, 3/4 cup of the vanilla sugar, the vanilla, milk, and lemon zest until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one by one, beating thoroughly after each addition.

4. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Spoon the mixture into the batter and mix until thoroughly belnded. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix once more. Set aside for 10 minutes to allow the flour to absorb the liquids.

5. In a large bowl, toss together 2 tablespoons of the vanilla sugar and 1/4 teaspoon of the cinnamon. Peel and core the apples, and cut each lengthwise into 16 even wedges. Transfer the apples to the bowl, tossing with the cinnamon sugar. Set aside.

6. Spoon the batter into the prepared cake pan, smoothing out the top with a spatula. Starting just inside the edge of thepan, neatly overlap the wedges of apples-thicker curved outer side against the side of the pan-in 2 or 3 concentric circles, working toward the center. Fill in the center with the remaining apples. Toss together the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and sprinkle over the apples.

7. Place the pan in the center of the oven. Bake until the apples are a deep golden brown and the cake feels quite firm when pressed with a fingertip, about 1 hour. Remove to a baking rack to cool. After 10 minutes, run a knife along the sides of the pan. Release and remove the side of the springform pan, leaving the cake on the pan base. Serve at room temperature, cutting into thin wedges.

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