This was a difficult topic for me. What do you do with apples??? I didn’t want to do an Apple Pie or Apple Crumble because I really don’t have anything special to add to those classic apples desserts. The only other thing I do with apples is chop them into quarters for the little ones, hardly inspiring cooking.
After agonizing all week, I was getting something out of the car when I noticed a “Coles Masterchef” recipe card for Marion’s Pistachio & Raspberry Jelly Cakes. Now even though there is no apple in this recipe, I finally had an idea for an invention test of my own.
So here it is Apple & Vanilla Mascarpone Cake with Caramel. Oh and I do realize I have failed at the Masterchef presentation, but it was so good to eat!
Walnut Butter Cake
250gm butter softened
250gm caster sugar
1 lemon, finely grated rind only
4 large eggs
125gm plain flour
65gm walnut crumbs
65gm ground almond or hazelnut meal
2 t/s baking powder
Pre heat oven to 160 degrees. Line a 20 x 30cm baking tray with baking paper. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition. Mix in the lemon rind, flour, baking powder, walnut and almond until combined.
Spread the mixture in baking tin and cook for 30 mins or until cooked through. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before turning out.
3 T/s icing sugar
2 t/s vanilla bean paste
In a bowl mix all three ingredients together and refrigerate until needed.
2 cups brown sugar (lightly packed)
In a suaucepan melt all the ingredients together. Stir until the sugar dissolved. Do not allow the sauce to boil. Continue to simmer on the stove until slightly thickened or about 5 – 10 minutes.
400gm pie apples
½ cup sultana
¼ cup walnut crumbs
¼ cup caramel sauce
In a bowl mix all ingredients together and refrigerate until needed.
To assemble the individual cakes I cut the cake with a sushi mould, but you could use a cookie cutter.
Next split the cake horizontally so you have a base and a lid. Spread the base cake with a generous amount of mascarpone.
Add a spoonful of the apple mixture ensure the apple is fairly flat.
Top with the remaining slice of cake and dust with icing sugar. Remaining caramel sauce is for serving.
If I made this cake again I would make it in two smaller sandwich tins, and have one big dessert cake. The taste of the finished product is unbelievably “vanillery” and fruity. I thoroughly enjoyed eating it, but I would never make individual serves again.
(I only made two individual cakes for the photo), the remainder I made one large cake. It was probably nicer to eat as everything stacks in well together. It was great as a cold dessert straight out of the fridge.
I know this list of ingredients looks huge but it is all simple and quick. The caramel sauce makes about double what you will need, but trust me. Make double, it is so good!!! You will want it on everything for the rest of your life.
The other clear winner in this recipe is the Mascarpone. When you taste it with vanilla and icing sugar you will die and go straight to heaven. It is amazing, I put it with everything, pancakes, strawberries, fruit crumble anything that I think the caramel sauce may be a little too rich. In the “Cheesemaking workshop” we learnt how to make about 500gms of Mascarpone for around $1.50. It was a great course because I had never really liked Mascarpone until I did the course and tasted it in a number of different dishes. Now I know how to cook with it, and I love it.
So what do you think people… I have taken a huge poet license from Marions Invention Test, but the result were delicious. Are you like me, and can’t stick to a recipe ever (even my own)? Or are you happy to give a recipe a go first time and make adjustments next time? I am curious, I hardly ever make a dish the same twice. 🙂