Caramel Apple Cake

I have made this cake twice now and each time it turned out really well. A soft and subtle caramel flavour is complimented beautifully with the crisp apple filling.

Caramel Apple

I was inspired to make this cake from a recipe I found on Tartlette . I thought, however, that the caramel cake alone may be too rich and that a fruit filling may break up the sweetness. I decided that crisp and tart apples are a fantastic flavour combination with caramel and it would make for a perfect accompaniment to the cake.  I am usually not that inventive with food and quite happy to follow a recipe but I was glad to adapt this one as the apple filling really did improve the cake.

When I first made this cake for a family barbeque with my new in-laws I was thrilled to hear that they loved it and even told me that it was one of the best caked they had ever eaten! Given its popularity I thought I would make it again for my Afternoon Tea Party and the ladies could not resist munching on the caramel shards.

Caramel Apple Cake

Overall it is a great cake and a real “must try” if you are a caramel lover, but I warn you: it is time-consuming and messy. Making the cake involves about six stages:

–          the caramel syrup

–          the cake

–          the icing

–          the filling

–          the caramel shards

–          the assembly

The first time I made it I and the kitchen were heavily wounded, mostly because making the caramel syrup creates a sugar volcano on your stove top. Once you put cold water into the hot syrup it bubbles, boils, splutters and simmers, eventually settling down to create a caramel liquid. I’ll admit all the activity really excited me as it was my first attempt at caramel but the clean-up that followed was intense.

For those of you who have made caramel you know it turns rock hard and is as sharp as glass. When the syrup splutters all over your stove and sticks like cement to your spoon to its resting plate you know you are in trouble. I cut myself trying to clean the shards of caramel because they really can turn into a substance which resembles glass and the usual cleaning methods will not work in removing it. I had to boil several cups of water to pour over my stove and equipment then hurriedly wipe away all the sugary substance before it set again. Not too much fun but well worth the trouble as I was thrilled with the golden elixir I had created.

The next time around it was simpler as I had enough caramel syrup left from the original cake to make another.

Overall it is a rather time-consuming cake but it is worth the effort, especially for you caramel lovers, and I am sure your family and friends will truly enjoy it.

Caramel Apple Cake

Caramel Syrup

Ingredients

  • 1 cups sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 0.5 cup water, at room temperature

Method

  1. In a small stainless steel saucepan with tall sides mix the water and sugar until it resembles wet sand without heat
  2. Brush down any stray sugar crystals with wet pastry brush.
  3. Turn on heat to highest flame and heat the mixture until it turns a dark amber colour, making sure you stir frequently
  4. Once the colour is achieved, very carefully pour in one cup of water. Caramel will bubble and splutter a lot. It is very dangerous, so make sure you are wearing long sleeves on and be prepared to step back
  5. Whisk over medium heat until it has reduced slightly and thickens into a syrup
  6. Pour into a cup of small jug and leave to cool