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Easy applesauce cake and a leaven

>> Tuesday, March 31, 2009

I baked this cake a couple of weeks ago, but I had conveniently freezed it for future famines... like those that happen at my home at anytime. But look at this cutie, say something to him, goo-goo sweetie... I found the recipe in an American website, but due to my famous organizing skills I forgot to record the name of the source when I copied it... I apologize for that, careless, careless. It's a very easy cake, because it doesn't use yolks beaten with sugar nor egg whites.

Back to the point, I was the proud owner of an applesauce surplus. I had woken up one day with the inevitable need to make applesauce with 2 pounds of apples
. Yeah, pretend you never do pointless things. I love applesauce, I often eat it as part of my breakfast, but this was too much for me.

Allright, I decided to put my surplus to good use and invest it in this very promising cake. Here goes the recipe:

Applesauce cake

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 2 cups applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat the oven to 350ºF (180 ºC) if conventional type and to 340ºF (170 ºC) if convection type. Butter and flour a couple of loaf pans. Sieve the flour in a bowl with the baking powder, the baking soda, the salt and the cinnamon. In another bowl (a big one) or in the blender bowl mix the eggs, sugar, oil, applesauce and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients on the wet ingredients and mix thoroughly to avoid any lumps. Pour this concoction in the pans never going above 2/3 of the height (better leave plenty of room than have the cake overflowing) and bake it for 50 minutes. After this time check for doneness with a knife or something similar and take it out. Leave it to cool in the pan, the consistency is quite soft when hot.

The amounts are enough for 2 loaf pans and 4 cupcake molds...

The essential to this is that I found it one of the best cakes I've ever tasted, very humid and tasty, I guess because of the applesauce. Nevertheless I didn't find the applesauce flavour to be very evident. On the other hand the flavour of the extra virgin oil I had used for vegetable oil was indeed VERY evident. I used a delicious Spanish oil from Badajoz, the oil I use for everything at home. I order a large amount once a year and have it immediately delivered. This oil has a relatively strong flavour when uncooked, but it is a lot softer when cooked. I love it and I think it gave the cake a very characteristic and wonderful touch.

Some changes I made to the recipe: I used less sugar and didn't add the cinnamon, I thought it a bit risky with my kids. I could have taken it out of the oven a bit before the end of the 50 minutes, because you can see the crust is a bit too toasted. Next time I will keep an attentive eye on it. And instead of the baking soda and the baking powder, I used my secret weapon: chemical leaven prepared at home, according to this. I will never reveal the secret composition, unless you force me to... alright, if you insist...

Chemical leaven:
You love this straightforward amounts, don't you? I was sure. They can be multiplied to obtain a measurable amount for mortals. The ratio given by Spanish pastry chef Paco Torreblanca is 1.9oz of mixture per 2 pounds of flour. In spite of the proportioning, I can assure it works beautifully. Ever since I use this secret formula I've had no cakes sinking, but maybe it's a coincidence... Yes, I belong to Cakesinkers Anonymous... everybody has a past.

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