Spiced Ap­ple cake

The Field - - Opening Shots -

200g pit­ted dates, roughly chopped

200ml milk, plus a splash

250g but­ter, soft­ened, plus ex­tra for

greas­ing

275g self-rais­ing flour

200g light soft brown sugar

½ tsp bak­ing pow­der

4 eggs

1 tsp ground cin­na­mon

1 tbsp ground mixed spice

2 tsp vanilla ex­tract

4 small red ap­ples

Squeeze lemon juice

Ic­ing sugar

For the sauce

300m dou­ble cream

2 tbsp golden syrup

100g soft brown sugar

Pre­heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/GAS Mark 4. Grease and line a 20cm x 30cm bak­ing tray with bak­ing parch­ment. Put the dates and milk in a small pan and bring to a sim­mer then re­move from the heat and leave to stand un­til cool. Whizz the date mix­ture to a smooth purée in a food pro­ces­sor then trans­fer into a large mix­ing bowl. Tip in the but­ter, flour, brown sugar, bak­ing pow­der, eggs, cin­na­mon, mixed spice and vanilla, and set aside. To pre­pare the ap­ples, peel, quar­ter and core then slice quite thinly, toss­ing in a lit­tle lemon juice as you go. Quickly beat the cake in­gre­di­ents to­gether with an elec­tric whisk un­til smooth then scrape into the bak­ing tray. Ar­range the ap­ple slices, over­lap­ping in rows, on top of the mix­ture and bake for 45-50 min­utes un­til a skewer comes out clean. Cool in the tray.

For the fudge sauce, heat the three in­gre­di­ents in a pan and stir un­til com­pletely smooth.

To serve, dust the cake with ic­ing sugar, then driz­zle the sauce all over then slice.

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