This lovely apple cake is from Sarah Fioroni's "A Family Farm in Tuscany". I'm hosting a blogging book tour for this beautiful cookbook next month, and I couldn't be more excited about it!
My family actually ate this cake for breakfast (it's not too sweet). While it might seem strange to some, this cake is absolutely perfect with pure maple syrup drizzled over it.
The apples are arranged decoratively on the surface of the batter in a rose pattern. Gorgeous. I have confessed before that presentation is my greatest weakness in the kitchen, but even my paltry skills produced a lovely rose design. If we hadn't have eaten it so quickly, I could have shown you the entire cake.
I used my 8" springform pan. You could use an 8" cake pan or a baking dish with a larger circumference (reduce the baking time accordingly).
Torta di Mele (Apple Cake)
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole milk
2.5 tablespoons butter, melted
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3 medium apples (about 1.75 pounds), peeled, cored, and cute into 1/8"-thick wedges
Powdered sugar to garnish (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter and flour an 8-inch springform pan, tapping the pan to remove excess flour; set aside.
Combine the eggs and sugar in bowl of electric mixer. Beat at medium-high speed for 5 minutes or until pale lemon in color and thickened. Gradually add the flour, milk, and butter, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl after each addition. Beat at low speed until ingredients are incorporated, then increase speed to medium-high and beat for 3 minutes. Add baking powder and vanilla and beat an additional 2 minutes to blend well.
Turn batter out into the prepared pan. Arrange the apple slices vertically, with the core side down, in concentric circles in the batter, beginning with the outside edge of the pan and continuing to the center. The arrangement of the apples should resemble a rose in full bloom.
Bake in preheated oven for about 50 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center of cake comes out clean and apples are browned.
Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes. Remove the sides of the springform pan. To serve, cut the warm cake into slices, then scatter powdered sugar over each serving.
From: A Family Farm in Tuscany: Recipes and Stories from Fattoria Poggio Alloro