An easy and simple-to-follow recipe for German Apple Cake, with a step-by-step pictorial. This wonderfully moist cake has all the goodness of fresh fruit, and is treated with a special, crumbly cinnamon streusel topping.
Happy Mother’s Day! Today’s post is in celebration of this special day, as I think of my own mother who’s halfway around the world in Canada.
The sad thing is that I have missed being with my Mom on every Mother’s Day celebration for the past 20 years. Pretty much every single year since I called Singapore home in 1994.
But last year, 2014, was exceptional! My mother, God bless her, was able to come to Singapore. She stayed for 7 months – it was awesome! I made sure to make Mother’s Day a special one for both of us to remember. Nothing over-the-top extravagant – my mother loves simplicity. So we celebrated with me baking a simple but pretty white vanilla cake, topped with vanilla whipped cream, and decorated with lilac and lemon-coloured rosettes. First cake I ever got to make for my mother. Our time spent together was precious and happiness – priceless.
Then Mom turned 80 early this year, a milestone she reached with good fortune, grace and dignity, and most of all, with blessings from above. I am so thankful for every day that we have her with us. I am eternally grateful for her unconditional and boundless love for all her children. In tribute to my Mom, and to all Mothers celebrating Mother’s Day today, I made this German Apple Cake. I think it’s something that every mother could easily and would lovingly make for her family. It’s an easy and simple-to-follow recipe, made all the more easier I hope, with my step-by-step pictorial. This wonderfully moist cake has all the goodness of fresh fruit, and is treated with a special, crumbly cinnamon streusel topping – it’s as unique as every one of our mothers truly are to us!
German Apple Cake
- 175 g unsalted butter softened at room temperature,
- 175 g light muscovado sugar (or light brown sugar)
- 1 tbsp finely grated lemon zest or finely grated zest of 1 lemon
- 3 eggs lightly beaten
- 175 g self-raising flour
- 3 tbsp milk
- 3 Granny Smith apples peeled, cored, cut into even, slim wedges
For the Streusel Topping
- 115 g plain flour plus extra, for dusting
- 85 g light muscovado sugar (or light brown sugar)
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 85 g unsalted butter chilled, cubed
- Rub in the butter gently with your fingertips until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Bring the crumbly dough together into a ball.
- Wrap the streusel dough in cling film or a plastic bag and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Pre-heat oven to 190 deg C (375 deg F). Grease a 20-cm or 8-inch loose-bottomed cake tin with butter and dust lightly with flour. Shake off the excess flour.
- In an electric mixer, with a paddle attachment fixed on, place butter and sugar in the mixer bowl.
- Cream butter and sugar on medium speed (between Speed 3 to 4 on my Kitchen Aid mixer).
- Cream until the batter turns pale and creamy in colour, and is light and fluffy.
- Add the lemon zest and cream with butter on low speed (speed 2 on my Kitchen Aid mixer) until well dispersed through the batter.
- Beat in the eggs, a little at a time, mixing well after each addition to avoid curdling.
- Beat until the eggs are well incorporated in the batter.
- Sift the flour into the batter and gently fold with a metal spoon or spatula.
- Finally, add the milk to the batter and gently mix it in until well incorporated.
- Spoon half of the batter into the prepared tin and spread evenly. Smooth the surface with a palette knife.
- Arrange half the apple wedges over the batter, reserving the best looking pieces for the top. Use larger apple wedges to line the circumference.
- Fill the centre with the smaller apple wedges.
- Spread the rest of the batter over the apples. Smooth once more with a palette knife. Arrange the remaining apple wedges on top of the cake in an attractive pattern.
- Remove the streusel dough from the refrigerator and coarsely grate it.
- Sprinkle the grated streusel evenly over the top of the cake.
- Bake in the centre of the oven for 45 minutes. Test with a skewer by inserting it into the centre of the cake. If the skewer emerges coated in batter, cook for a few minutes more and test again. When baking is finished, remove the cake from the oven and leave the cake in the tin for 10 minutes.
- Keeping the streusel on top, carefully remove the cake from the tin and cool on a wire rack. Serve warm.