Spiced Apple Cake

Well, if Wednesday's On The Side column got you in the mood for coffee, I thought you might like a slice of cake to go with it. With apples coming into season, why not try this terrific recipe from the celebrated Sarah Mellersh of the late lamented Let's Cook Scotland? Thanks as ever to Sarah for permission to reproduce her recipes.

See my notes about cooking time in the recipe. One  word about the nutmeg. Fresh is obviously better, but you will need at least half of the nut to give you one teaspoon full. I think you could get away with it out of a jar, provided the jar hasn't been in your cupboard for two years. And a final word about the apples. The weight given is the net weight, after peeling and coring. Start with about 320g of raw fruit.


225g cooking apples, peeled, cored and finely sliced; 225g self raising flour; 110g butter; 115g soft brown sugar; pinch of salt; 1tsp freshly grated nutmeg; 1tsp ground cinnamon; 50g raisins or sultanas; 2 eggs, beaten; 25g Demerara sugar (for the topping).


Preheat the oven to 180˚C/Mark 4. Grease and line a 900g/2lb loaf tin.

Sieve the flour, salt and spices into a mixing bowl, then rub in the butter with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the soft brown sugar, raisins and apples. Gradually beat in the eggs.

Pour the mixture into the tin. Sprinkle the Demerara sugar on top and bake for 75 minutes, then do the skewer test. (Sarah's recipe says, bake for 1¼ - 1½ hours or until the cake is firm to the touch. I wouldn't describe mine as firm after 75 minutes, so I gave it about another 7, and wished I hadn't.) Allow to cool on a rack. (And if you prefer, feel free to have a cup of tea with it instead of coffee.)

1 Comment

  1. Liz on 26th August 2023 at 4:16 pm

    Yes maybe safer with tea if you don’t want to get high… coffee and nutmeg could be a powerful combo!

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