Apple Cider Donut Cake

After our second annual apple and pumpkin picking day we came home with tons of apples and fresh cider.  The mulled cider was fantastic and super easy, (simmer a few cups of apple cider with cinnamon sticks and a pinch of nutmeg; top with whipped cream), and we've been eating apple slices with whipped peanut butter dip for a few days now. So I have been researching and dreaming up some delicious baked apples recipes for the rest of our bounty.

This recipe was adapted from Two in the Kitchen, another great food blog.

Ingredients:

  • 2 large  apples (I used Melrose), peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups apple cider
  • 1/2 cup milk, at room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup of unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Cinnamon Sugar Coating
  • 6 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray a bundt pan with baking spray.
  2. In a medium saucepan, bring chopped apples and cider to boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until apples are fork tender. About 10 to 12 minutes. Remove pan from heat, cool for a few minutes, then pulse in a food processor or blender until pureed. Measure out 1 cup apple mixture and stir in milk. Set aside for later. *** SEE NOTE BELOW.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon and set aside.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, sugar, and brown sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until incorporated. Add oil and mix well. 
  5. Add the flour mixture and apple/milk mixture alternatively in three additions, scraping the bowl as needed and mixing after each addition.Add the vanilla and beat once more, just to combine. 
  6. Scrape batter into prepared pan. Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place the cake in its pan on a cooling rack for ten minutes before removing the cake itself to a cooling rack for at least 30 minutes.
  7. For the Cinnamon Sugar Coating:
  8. Combine sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg, in a small bowl. Sprinkle warm cake with cinnamon sugar, using fingers to rub it onto sides. Save some for dipping individual cake slices in if desired.
  9. *** Note about the use of pureed apples in this recipe: 
  10. You will only use the cup of apple puree that you removed from the processor for this recipe. The remaining pureed apples left in the processor is leftover and not needed for the recipe. People often ask why the recipe called for more apples than needed and the reason is that because apples are not standard in either size or the amount of liquid they will yield, you need to boil and puree more than enough to make sure you have enough to yield a cup of puree. Everyone will end up with a different amount of leftover puree depending on how big the apples you used and the amount of liquid they yield. (I added cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and raisins to the extra apple puree to use a filling for pastries). 

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