This is an excellent recipe from Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh’s dessert cookbook, Sweet. I made only one change to the original recipe, which happened entirely by accident. Some friends and I had planned to double the recipe to feed a large group of people. We chopped up twice the amount of apples, but forgot to increase the quantity of the rest of the ingredients! Our mistake turned out to be an improvement, yielding two insanely moist cakes with more apple than batter. (Despite not having doubled the entire recipe, I still baked the batter in two separate pans.)
This dessert is beautiful, studded with raisins and chunks of Granny Smith apple, and a perfect celebration of the autumn season. Ottolenghi and Goh suggest decorating the cake with maple frosting, which sounds delicious. However, I prefer to show it off as is, dusted with just a bit of confectioner’s sugar. If you’d prefer a frosted cake, refer to the original recipe.
Apple Olive Oil Cake – With Extra Apples
Very lightly adapted from Ottolenghi and Goh’s cookbook, Sweet
2/3 cup (100 grams) raisins
1 cup (240 ml) water, divided
2 2/3 cups (350 g) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
6 large Granny Smith apples (800 g)
1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
2/3 cup (160 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 large egg whites
Scraped seeds of 1/2 vanilla bean
Zest of 1 lemon
Powdered sugar, for dusting
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease the base and sides of two 9-inch round springform pans and line with parchment paper. Allow the paper to rise about an inch above the pan.
- Peel and core apples. Dice into 1-inch cubes, place in a bowl, and set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, combine raisins with 2/3 cup water. Over low heat, simmer until water has been absorbed. Set aside.
- Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, and sift into a medium mixing bowl. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, or in the bowl of a stand mixer, combine granulated sugar, whole eggs, olive oil, vanilla seeds, lemon zest. Mix (on medium speed, if using a handheld mixer or the paddle attachment of a stand mixer) for 6-7 minutes until mixture is pale, slightly thickened, and doubled in size.
- If using a stand mixer, remove bowl from the machine. Fold in apples, raisins, and the remaining 1/3 cup of water. Gently fold in sifted dry ingredients.
- In a small, clean bowl, whisk egg whites until soft peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the cake batter.
- Scrape batter into the prepared springform pans. Bake for 45-55 minutes, until a toothpick or skewer inserted into the middle of the cakes comes out clean. Set aside to cool directly in the pans. Remove when completely cool.
- If serving right away, dust with powdered sugar and cut into slices. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge. If making far in advance, store in the freezer. To ensure freshness when freezing, wrap cakes in plastic wrap, followed by tinfoil, and place in gallon-size freezer bags. Defrost the night before serving.
Serves around 16 people