This is a pudding pretending to be a cake, which is a very, very good thing indeed. Slices of apple and ground almonds in a softly-set custard flecked with vanilla seeds. A bit like a bread and butter pudding, but lighter and more elegant. Use organic lemons for this as they really do make a difference. This cake ranks very highly on my top ten cake list in fact, it might even be ‘the one’.
Lemon & apple pudding cake
From River Cafe Two Easy, Rose Gray & Ruth Rogers, 2005
free range eggs 2
organic lemons 2 (organic ones really do make a huge flavour difference)
caster sugar 300g
vanilla paste 1 teaspoon
butter 110g, melted
ground almonds 125g
gluten free or plain flour 5 tablespoons
baking powder 1 & 1/2 teaspoons (check it’s gluten free if that’s a concern)
apples, 4, peeled, cored and thinly sliced (I used Granny Smith)
sugar for sprinkling on top
Preheat oven to 150ºC and grease and line a 23cm cake tin. Crack the eggs into a large bowl and add the sugar, vanilla paste and lemon zest. Beat with electric beaters until light in colour and thick. While still beating, slowly pour in the milk and melted butter. Remove the beaters and sprinkle over the ground almonds and flour and use a flat spatula or wooden spoon to fold in. Add three quarters of the chopped apple to the batter, stir and pour into cake tin. Arrange the rest of the sliced apples on top and sprinkle with sugar and bake for at least one hour.
As it is quite a runny batter I recommend putting a tray on the shelf below the cake to collect any possible drips. Serve this cake warm or cold with a dollop of thickened cream or Greek yoghurt. Prepare to swoon.