The cake is quite light and isn't too sweet, so the dense apples and the spiced sugar topping really bring it all together. The topping caramelises so it goes a bit like toffee, it's really good. I've made stewed apples and put them in the cake while still quite warm and it doesn't seem to affect the cake.
For the cake
- 3 apples, cut into wedges (enough to cover the top of the cake, also peel them or score the skin if the skins are thick)
- ¼ cup (60ml) oil
- ½ cup (100g) sugar (light brown, or a mix of caster and dark brown)
- 1 cup (240ml) stewed apples (I use around four apples to make this much. I leave the skins on and mash them up in the pan at the end)
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) nondairy milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1½ cups (roughly 200g) plain flour
- 2½ teaspoons baking powder
For the topping
- ¼ cup (60g) firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (fan oven)
- Oil a 9-inch (23-cm) springform pan (I usually put a strip of greaseproof round the sides because the topping caramelises and can stick).
- Cook the apple wedges in the microwave until they’re a bit softened. I put them in the microwave for no longer than 1½ minutes. It depends on the apples though, I've made the cake without this and it's been nice.
- In a bowl mix together the oil, sugar, stewed apples and milk. Mix in the vanilla.
- Add the flour and baking powder, and stir until only just combined.
- Put it in the springform pan, and arrange the apple slices in a circle on top of the cake. Whatever pattern you like, but it helps to have a few little gaps here and there.
- For the topping, mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, and ginger, and sprinkle over the apples, covering the top of the cake. I put a bit more around the edges so it caramelises and sinks into the gaps between apples, it makes a spicy toffee.
- Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes before unmoulding from the cake pan.
I adapted this from an American recipe which is why it has cup measurements. I've used the metric measurements too and it works out the same, the difference is with the amount of flour and sugar because a 'cup' depends on how compacted it is. With weight you get it right every time - but this recipe is very forgiving!