Saturday, March 11, 2017

Weekend Cooking: Apfelkuchen

I think I mentioned a couple of months ago that I have been watching a lot of UK chef Rick Stein's TV shows at the moment. I first bought one of his cook books back in the 1990s when I lived in the UK, so I guess I have been a fan for a while, but I have been particularly enjoying the combination of travel, culture, history and food that have been features of his most recent series.

One of those recent series has been the Long Weekends series, where he has visiting cities that are within a short flying distance from the UK, and not necessarily some of the better known places like Paris or Rome. Instead he has visiting places like Reykjavik, Vienna and Bordeaux.  In fact, the visit to Vienna had me craving really good weiner schnitzel for weeks, a craving I only just satisfied this week with an Italian version which was delicious.

This recipe comes from the episode where he visited Berlin. As soon as I saw this I knew that I wanted to try it. I should also have known that my son was not going to want to try it no matter how delicious it was, and that was confirmed in due course. I was, however, a little surprised when the reason why he wouldn't try it was because you shouldn't put fruit in cake. Since when? Guess my work mates are going to get a big chunk of cake tomorrow. Luckily, they are generally an appreciative audience!

So what is Apfelkuchen? It sounds so much more exotic than apple cake, but that is pretty much what it is! I definitely would make it again, but it won't be just for home because otherwise I will end up having to eat it all myself. I could easily do that, but I probably shouldn't!

Apfelkuchen (German Apple Cake)

2 dessert apples, peeled, cored and sliced into thin wedges
1 tbsp lemon juice
125g/4½oz butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
140g/5oz golden caster sugar
3 free-range eggs, at room temperature, beaten
225g/8oz plain flour
2 level tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
5 tbsp full-fat milk

For the topping

1½ tbsp demerara sugar
½ tsp ground cinnamon


Preheat the oven to 170C/150C Fan/Gas 3. Butter and line a 23cm/9in round cake tin.

Coat the apple wedges in the lemon juice and set aside.

In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar, using an electric hand mixer, until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs and beat until smooth. Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt and mix well. Slowly add the milk, mixing well after each addition, until you have a smooth batter.

Transfer the batter to the cake tin. Arrange the apple slices, flat-side down, on the batter in a spiral pattern.

For the topping, mix together the demerara sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle over the batter.

Bake in the middle of the oven for 40–45 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean and the top is golden-brown. Leave to cool for 15 minutes in the tin. Run a knife around the edges of the cake and turn it out of the tin onto a wire rack.

Serve warm or at room temperature with whipped cream.

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  1. Whoa! This looks awesome. And if the boy won't eat his share, you can give it to me. Sounds like a great fall recipe.

  2. My grandma made apfelkuchen all the time! It didn't look like that, though, it was a sheet pan cake. Sooo good