I’ve never been huge in baking, always loved cooking, but sweets and cakes were not my thing. This until a few months ago.
I think everything changed when I moved from Milan to this little village of mine. In summer was far too hot to switch on the oven (the house itself felt like one), but as soon as the temperature dropped I found myself for the first time in my life craving for tarts and biscuits. In the village there is a shortage of places where to get nice cakes and I’m not a huge fan of the only bakery I have in walking distance. Their stuff seems to be over-manufactured using lots of bleached flours and lots of refined sugar.
After asking a few neighbours about the basic rules for baking a cake, I started experimenting. The base I use for all my cakes is the same one and can be used to make cookies too (I made some the other day adding other yummy stuff, I’ll share the recipe soon!). I soon ditched white flour, instead I’m using wholemeal flour. I ditched white sugar, using brown instead and I’m cutting down on its quantity constantly.
It’s really a super easy, no fuss apple and walnut cake:
the ingredients you’ll need for the base:
300g of wholemeal flour
140g of butter
130g of brown sugar
1/2 packet of yeast
20 walnuts (chopped finely)
for the top:
3/4 cooking apples sliced, I love rennets in it because a little bit acidic (not sure the name in English is correct, in Italian they’re called “mele renette”)
work all these ingredients in a large bowl, when compact and a bit elastic it’s ready to lay in a baking tin. Put the slices of apples on top and it’s ready to go in the oven, at 180 degrees for around 30 minutes.
As I said it’s really super easy to make, a no fuss cake. Below you can see a slice of the version with homemade jam on top. The base is very versatile, you can put on top pears or other fruit too or any kind of jam/marmalade.