[This Holiday Apple Bundt Cake will wow your guests and provide a great showpiece to your holiday dessert table! Just don’t tell anyone it’s vegan, refined sugar-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free*, nut-free* and yeast-free–they will never know! Suitable for Stage 3 and beyond on an anti-candida diet.]
[Photo credit: Celine Saki.]
It happens every year: in an instant, we seemingly switch from strolling for hours after dinner in our shorts and tank tops, bathed in the bright light and long shadows cast across the sidewalk, to donning our sweaters and jeans, evenings lit with a shimmery, orange-tinged glow that seems to dissipate and fall into pitch darkness within seconds. How I lament the end of summer!
Seems we shift our culinary allegiance just as quickly. It’s the blink of an eye between slurpy peaches and pineapple, melty bowls of ice cream topped with sliced strawberries or plates heaped with garden lettuce and basil, to suddenly embracing All Things Orange. Pumpkins, squashes, sweet potatoes and carrots dominate food blogs; food sharing sites buzz with images of porridge, Jack O’ Lanterns and cinnamon rolls; and leaves festoon the trees with shades of rust, crimson, mustard and tan. Suddenly, we’re all in love with autumn produce.
Whether or not you engage in trick or treating, or whether you gather with family and friends for Thanksgiving or Rosh Hashanah, there’s nothing quite as appealing as all the autumn desserts bursting with apples, pears, cranberries and the occasional persimmon. Whether it’s a pumpkin caramel swirl brownie, pumpkin fudge, apple-pumpkin crumble bars or sneaky butterscotch pudding, I love them all. I may hate the cooler nights and chilly mornings, but I can’t deny it: autumn is fabulous, and in so many ways.
This Holiday Apple Bundt Cake has a particular place in my heart, since it’s a renovated version of one of my mother’s old recipes that she baked every fall. My sisters and I used to clamor to help measure the flour, pour the oil and beat the eggs in anticipation of licking the bowl and beaters from the finished batter. We’d carefully peel, core and slice the apples, tossing them in brown sugar and cinnamon, then layer them meticulously within the walls of the bundt pan so that they’d remain encased in batter. The best part, of course, was cutting the domed pieces to reveal the apple treasure inside–and then eating them!
I first revamped the recipe back in 2008, creating a healthier version made with spelt and barley flours, sweetened with Sucanat and agave nectar. Perfectly delicious as it was, the recipe became off-limits for me when I switched to a diet free of gluten and high glycemic sweeteners. This iteration, which I crafted for inclusion in Naturally Sweet & Gluten-Free, still retains the moist, cinnamony interior bursting with apples as well as the tender golden cake enclosing the fruit. It’s just as enticing, without compromising my special diet. Since it’s also egg-free, dairy-free, soy-free and nut-free, I bet it will work for yours, too.
Isn’t autumn fabulous?
[Photo credit: Celine Saki.]
Holiday Apple Bundt Cake
from Naturally Sweet & Gluten-Free (copyright 2013, Sellers Publishers)
A cake this big and bursting with apples really does evoke a celebration. My mom used to bake a similar cake for the holidays in our house. With its double layer of cinnamon-soaked apples and moist cake layers, this beauty will likely become a favorite at your house, too.
For the Filling:
2 medium apples, cored and thinly sliced (I leave the skins on, but you can peel if you prefer)
1/4 cup (60 ml) coconut sugar
1 Tbsp (15 ml) cinnamon
For the Cake Batter:
1/2 cup (40 g) coconut sugar
1/2 cup (120 ml) coconut nectar
1-1/2 cups (360 ml) unsweetened plain or vanilla soy, almond, or other nondairy milk
1 Tbsp (15 ml) pure vanilla extract
1 Tbsp (15 ml) apple cider vinegar
1 tsp (5 ml) pure lemon extract
2 tsp (10 ml) finely ground chia seeds
1/3 cup (80 ml) sunflower or other light-tasting oil, preferably organic
1-3/4 cups (230 g) Ricki’s All Purpose Gluten Free Flour Mix
1/2 cup (60 g) quinoa flour
1/4 tsp (1 ml) 100% pure stevia powder, or scant 1/2 tsp (2 ml) pure liquid stevia
1 Tbsp (15 ml) baking powder
1 tsp (5 ml) baking soda
2 tsp (10 ml) xanthan gum
1/2 tsp (2.5 ml) fine sea salt
Preheat oven to 350F (180C). Lightly grease a large bundt pan with coconut oil or spray with nonstick spray.
In a medium bowl, toss the apple slices with the coconut sugar and cinnamon; set aside.
In another medium bowl, combine the coconut sugar, coconut nectar, milk, vanilla, vinegar and lemon extract; stir until the coconut sugar dissolves. Add the chia seeds and oil and stir again. If using liquid stevia, add it here as well. Set aside.
In a large bowl, sift together the AP flour, quinoa flour, stevia (if using powder), baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum and salt. Pour the wet mixture over the dry and stir to blend.
Spoon about 1/3 of the batter into the bottom of the pan (you can just estimate) and spread to cover the bottom. Cover with a layer of about 1/2 the apples, taking care not to let apples touch the sides of the pan (it’s not a tragedy if they do happen to touch the sides, but it will make it a bit more difficult to remove the cake from the pan without it breaking). Top with another 1/3 of the batter, gently spreading to cover the apples as completely as possible. Add the rest of the apples, again taking care not to touch the sides of the pan; finish with the last 1/3 of the batter, and gently smooth the top. All the apples should be covered with batter; if a tiny edge or point of apple sticks out from the batter on top, this is fine, but most should be under batter. Lift the pan one or two inches/centimeters off the counter and then drop down again to help the batter settle into the spaces between the apple slices; repeat once more.
Bake in preheated oven for 55 to 65 minutes, rotating pan about halfway through, until a tester inserted halfway between the outside and inside walls of the pan comes out clean (it can be moist from the apples, but shouldn’t have any batter on it). The cake should be domed on top and very well browned.
Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 20-30 minutes before turning out onto a rack and cooling completely. This cake is lovely plain, with ice cream or whipped cream. Makes up to 24 servings. Store covered in refrigerator for up to 3 days. May be frozen.
Suitable for: ACD Stage 3 Maintenance and beyond; refined sugar-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free [*with nutmilk], nut free [*with soymilk], yeast-free, vegan.
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