Apple & hazelnut crumble cake
This is the cake with which to embrace the arrival of autumn: warming, comforting and delicately spiced. Because of the apple it’s quite pudding-like – a good excuse to eat it warm with a dollop of cream or even ice-cream.
Serves 8 for the hazelnut crumble topping
40g butter 50g wholemeal flour 40g demerara sugar ½ tsp cinnamon A few gratings of nutmeg 50g chopped hazelnuts
for the cake
150g softened butter, plus extra for greasing 150g soft brown sugar 3 eggs 75g wholemeal flour 75g white self-raising flour 1 tsp baking powder 1 cooking apple or two dessert apples, peeled, cored and roughly chopped
you will need
A 23cm cake tin
1 Preheat oven to 190C/Fan 170C/Gas 5. To make the crumble topping, put all of the ingredients, except the hazelnuts, in a bowl and rub together until they resemble breadcrumbs. Add the hazelnuts and rub them in, too. Set aside.
2 Grease and line a 23cm cake tin with baking parchment. Using an electric whisk or wooden spoon, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then beat in the eggs, one by one, making sure each is fully incorporated before adding the next. Sieve in the flours and baking powder, add a pinch of salt and the apple, and mix with a wooden spoon.
3 Tip the cake batter into the prepared tin, smooth the surface, then sprinkle over the crumble topping. Bake for about 45 mins, or until you feel resistance when you push a cocktail stick into the centre and try to move it around in the cake.
4 Leave to cool in the tin for 15 mins, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely (or slice and eat warm).
Cakes don’t come more autumnal than this one, packed with apple and nuts, and aromatic with cinnamon