The name of this cake is somewhat deceiving, since most apple cakes are easier than pie (which is actually never that easy if you’re making it from scratch). In any case, it’s a simple, excellent cake with a tender crumb, subtle spicing and soft pockets of fruit. Serve it plain, or with a dollop of ice cream, whipped cream or crème fraîche.
- 1 cup/125 grams unbleached all-purpose flour, more as needed
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 ounces/57 grams unsalted butter (1/2 stick), softened
- 1 cup/200 grams granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 large egg
- 2 cups diced apples (from about 2 apples)
- ½ cup/57 grams toasted pecans, chopped (optional)
- Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
- In a mixer bowl fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add the egg and mix until smooth.
- With the mixer on low, beat in dry ingredients until smooth (at this point the batter will be quite thick). Fold in the apples and nuts by hand.
- Spread batter evenly into a greased and floured 9-inch fluted tart or quiche pan with 1-inch sides. (Alternatively you can use a 9-inch cake pan with 1-inch sides.) Bake until cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.