Where Local and Global Appetites Collide

Apple Cake Recipe with Caramel Icing


Originally uploaded by Child of the 60’s

Well I finally did it. I baked my mother’s Fresh Apple Cake with Easy Penuchi Icing  (tastes like caramel) after 35 years of self-denial because I was worried about the calories and the temptation. Not that I had stopped eating desserts and other wonderful foods during that time. My choice was to not get in the habit of making desserts for home use — a form of portion control.

The event that warranted the policy change was the visit of my sister, her daughter, and her daughter’s daughters — 3 generations of my family who I don’t often get to see. What better celebration than to bake a cake that would bring back memories of my mother and create new memories for the next generations.

Watch this slide show of the Fresh Apple Cake in various stages of preparation.

Photo 1 shows the creamy batter with the nuts and chunks of apples in all their glory. I mixed it in a glass bowl that used to belong to my mother-in-law, Mathilda Johnson, a wonderful cook.

Photo 2 shows the batter transferred to the baking container. I chose a bundt cake pan that I had purchased at a fine-arts show years ago. As a side note, I have used this same container to hold a fresh flower arrangement for Thanksgiving. Orange and rust-colored mums look beautiful against its gold tones.

Photo 3 shows the apple cake right from the oven. I ended baking it longer than the original recipe said to. Always test with a clean knife, inserting it and withdrawing it to see that there is no wet batter still clinging to its sides. One possible explanation for the extended time needed in my oven is that I use gas and my mother had an electric oven — which runs hotter. You can get a better look at my container in this photo. Isn’t the wheat decoration pretty?

Photo 4 shows the finished cake with the Easy Penuchi Icing on it. It takes like caramel and is w-o-n-d-e-r-f-u-l.

Photo 5 shows the four generations of my family: Valentine Nicholas (my Dad — yes, that is his real first name — he’s the 3rd male in his family to have that name), Sharon W. Barker (my sister), Shari Johnson (my niece), Taylor Johnson, (my great niece).

The end result?  It was better than I remembered it (which says a lot).  It is so rich that you don’t need to eat a lot.  Just serve a sliver with some coffee and you will be more than satisfied.  And walk an extra mile or two or three to balance the equation.

Here’s a great gift idea that marries the memorable cake with the new. Give the cake with the recipe as a gift along with the modern designed serving set to create memories for the younger generation.

  1. This was wonderful. I had a great time visiting so did the kids. Bailey talks about you a lot. Too bad she wasnt in the picture too.

  2. Mary,
    That cake looks divine. Is the recipe already on the site? I think I remember you talking about it.
    Your yard looks huge and so green.

  3. Yes, links to the recipes for both the cake and the icing are in the first paragraph.

    Regarding, my back yard, you have to remember that I live in the Midwest (Ohio). It is much cheaper to live here than in California (not sure about Arizona where you live). Here, in the suburbs, it is pretty standard to have a half-acre lot (which is what we have). The farther you go from the suburbs, then 5-acre lots are common.

    And yes, compared to Arizona, we are green. Although it can get pretty crispy in August if you don’t water your lawn. Our shade trees in the back yard help out a lot there – eliminating the need to water.

    Ohio is a nice place to live. We have four seasons, lots of art, culture, nature, and no long commutes to work! In fact, of all the jobs I have had in the past 25 years, my longest commute was 30 minutes to a job that was on the other side of town.

  4. That cakes looks so good. Maybe you will have to make it for me sometime…:)
    but the cookies you made were so good.. I still have a couple left, which yes it surprising, because i shared them and still didn’t eat them all in a month.

  5. Torie, those cookies had 100% whole wheat in them. Did you notice that you didn’t feel hungry after eating them, like you normally would with cookies with white flour? Big difference.

    And yes, I’ll make you that cake. How about Christmas break?

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