Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Autumn Apple Nut Cake

Autumn Apple Nut Cake
Dorcas Annette Walker

There are many uses for apples. One is making cider. Nearby the theological college where my husband attended were several apple orchards. Every fall a big tourist attraction in the area was the cider that some of the Mennonites had perfected with their special blending of apples. No cider I’ve tasted since has come close. To Dana and the other out-of-state fellows who lived in the dorm, the taste of homemade cider with its aroma of newly crushed apples was the next thing to heaven. It also was a big money maker for the senior class. Dana and some of his buddies each bought a gallon of cider to drink. What nobody thought to tell these guys was that cider needed to stay refrigerated. After a week of sitting in their warm dorm rooms the sweet cider turned hard. Despite the change in taste- it was beginning to burn as it went down- they began daring each other and bragging about how much they could drink. Dana and his friends ended up getting uproariously happy and had quite a party in the boy’s dorm. Everything was quickly hushed up and the school officials banned all classes from selling cider for any future class fund raisers to avoid any hint of a scandal. For the record, I make sure that any cider entering my house stays refrigerated.

Every autumn I bake up a favorite cake I call, Autumn Apple Nut Cake, which uses fresh apples. My Autumn Apple Nut Cake captures the flavor of the fall season like no other cake I’ve tried. Throughout the years I’ve taken a couple of different apple cake recipes blending and mixing ingredients together until I was satisfied. Not only does the subtle taste of spices bring out the tang of the apples in this cake, but my Autumn Apple Nut Cake has a velvet-like moist texture that is filling. Raisins could be added if one desired. The crowning touch to my Autumn Apple Nut Cake is the rich caramel topping. My Autumn Apple Nut Cake takes about twenty minutes to prepare and serves around sixteen.

Autumn Apple Nut Cake

In large mixing bowl beat together:
1 c vegetable oil
1½ c sugar
½ c brown sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 c self-rising flour
2 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp allspice
Mix thoroughly and then fold in:
1 c chopped pecans (or nuts of your choice)
3 apples peeled and diced
Pour into a greased bunt cake pan and bake at 350ยบ for one hour. Cool for five minutes and then turn out the Autumn Apple Nut Cake on a cake dish and cover.

Caramel Frosting:
¼ c brown sugar
¼ c evaporated milk
2 tb margarine
Microwave for a minute or until the margarine is all melted.
Stir in and beat until smooth:
3 c powdered sugar
Pour the caramel frosting over the cake letting it run down the sides. You can serve the Autumn Apple Nut Cake while it is still warm or wait until it is completely cooled. Keep the cake covered when storing to help it stay moist. You may garnish the Autumn Apple Nut Cake with chopped nuts if you desire!

Dorcas Annette Walker is a freelance writer, author, columnist, and photographer from Jamestown, TN. If you have any cooking tips or favorite recipes you are welcome to contact me by mail at: Dorcas Walker, 929 Wildwood Lane, Jamestown, TN 38556 or email me at: dorcaswalker@yahoo.com. For more information about the Walker family and Dorcas’ books check out her website at: www.dorcasannettewalker.com or htpp://dorcasannettewalker.blogspot.com for other Creative Mountain Cookin recipes.

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