Apple Cake

Apple cake ready to cover
The amount of goo on the
                knife when the cake is ready
Iced and decorated

From: well, the apple cake recipe is by Michael Barry and is from the 1995 BBC Good Food show guide while the icing is based on a butterscotch sauce recipe from Ices: The Definitive Guide by Caroline Liddell and Robin Weir.

Note: this recipe makes far more toffee sauce than is required to ice this cake.  However the toffee sauce keeps for ages in the fridge and you'll definitely find a way to use it; with stewed apples, on pancakes, on waffles, ice cream or just make more apple cake...


For the cake:

For the toffee sauce:

For the butter cream:


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 190 C.
  2. Grease and line a deep (~8 cm), 20 cm diameter, cake tin.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar together until very pale and soft.
  4. Beat in the eggs, the black treacle and the milk.
  5. Mix in the flour, ginger, baking powder and then the diced apples.
  6. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin.
  7. Make a doubled-over piece of greaseproof paper about the size of the tin and place this loosely on top of the cake to avoid the top of the cake burning while it bakes.
  8. Bake for 50 minutes (but see point 15).
  9. While the cake is baking, make the toffee sauce as follows...
  10. Put the soft brown sugar, granulated sugar, unsalted butter and golden syrup into a saucepan and cook over a very low heat until the ingredients have melted and most of the sugar has dissolved.
  11. Raise the heat to bring the mixture to a gentle boil and allow to boil for 5 minutes.
  12. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the cream, vanilla extract and black treacle, and leave to cool.
  13. Next make the butter cream by mixing together the unsalted butter and sieved icing sugar until the sugar is incorporated and then mix them very hard to obtain an almost white, very soft, goo.
  14. Stir 4 tbsp of the cooled toffee sauce into the butter cream.
  15. Back to the cake.  It is very difficult to tell when this cake is cooked as it browns on the top well before it is done in the middle.  Test it by inserting a knife or skewer into the middle of the cake and, if cake mixture comes out on the knife or skewer, return the cake to the oven to bake for another 10 minutes and then test it again.  Since the apples give it moistness the end of the knife may not be completely clean so use the picture above as a guide as to what "ready" is.
  16. When the cake is cooked, leave it to cool.
  17. When the cake has cooled, spread the butter cream plus toffee icing you assembled in point 14 evenly over the top of it.
  18. Drizzle thin lines of the remaining toffee sauce ham-fistedly over the cake in a cross-hatch pattern for some simple decoration.

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