Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Make-ahead apple cake

This cake, courtesy of Diane Phillips, can be made up to a month ahead and frozen; the sauce can be made up to a week before and kept in the refrigerator.

Hot Apple Cake with Caramel Pecan Sauce
Serves 8

Ingredients for cake
2 sticks butter

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1-1/2 cups flour

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

1 tsp. baking soda

3 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and finely chopped

1/2 cup chopped pecans

2 tsp. vanilla

Ingredients for caramel sauce 
4 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup pecan halves

1 cup light brown sugar

1 cup whipping cream

Vanilla ice cream

Instructions
To make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch cake pan. Beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, until well blended. Add flour, spices and soda and beat until just incorporated. Mix in the apples, nuts and vanilla. Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes. Remove to rack to cool. Refrigerate the cake when cooled. Reheat in 350-degree oven for 10 minutes before serving.

To make the caramel sauce: Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Add pecan halves. Add brown sugar and whipping cream, and cook, stirring constantly, until sauce boils and sugar dissolves. Refrigerate for up to a week. To serve, place a wedge of warm cake onto dessert plate. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and spoon hot caramel pecan sauce over all.

Per serving (with sauce and ice cream): 485 cal.; 5 g pro.; 52 g carb.; 29 g fat (15 sat., 11 monounsat., 3 polyunsat.); 115 mg chol.; 177 mg sod.; 2 g fiber; 31 g sugar; 54 percent calories from fat.

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