Apple Streusel Cake

from Emily (who loves food)

Streusel, not crumb, because I know fancy baking words.

Same as an apple crumb cake though, don’t be intimidated.

Today, I was confident I was going to go swimming in the sea – the first swim of the season. I had my bikini on, was at the beach, the sun was shining and I was ready to go.

The only flaw in my plan was that I hate cold. Hate it.

So as soon as I was up to my knees in ice-cube ocean Orewa beach, with the suddenly chill wind whipping around my shoulders and goose bums on every inch of my body, I scrapped the plan. Chickened out. Bolted: one hundred percent.

We went and got a vanilla shake and spring roll at the quintessential bare-foot cafe instead.

So to give my day a little more… purpose, I made this cake. To prove to myself that I could at least follow through on something.

For you Americans, this is even more appropriate, because ‘fall’ is the perfect time to indulge in buttery apple-y cinnamon-y deliciousness.

This cake is a bit of a show stopper – perfect both with your morning cuppa and as a delicious dessert to take along to your next dinner party or bbq. A really yummy, slightly tangy vanilla cake, topped with a layer of juicy apple, followed up by a cinnamon and hazelnut crumb.

Unfortunately, it was hot in my kitchen, and my butter wasn’t super-cold, so my crumb, instead of looking like sand, looks more like pebbles. Not that it was an issue at all – it still tastes delicious! But that’s the thing with streusel – like pastry – your butter has to be super cold in order to achieve those delicious thin crumbs that just melt in your mouth.

Not that anyone minded here though, the solid verdict on the first slice was: ‘That’s good. That’s REALLY good!’

If you really want to jazz this fella up though, drizzle a little caramel sauce over the top before serving.



Apple Streusel Cake – Yeilds 1 24cm cake, serves 10-12

Prep time: 15mins  Cook time: 45 – 55mins

  • 2/3 cup low-fat greek yogurt
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/3 cup sugar (or vanilla sugar, if you have it)
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 medium or 2 large apples, use granny smith or lemonade for the most flavour
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 40g of cold butter, cut into small peices
  • 1/4 cup roasted hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 3 tbs brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 180C, and line a 25cm cake tin with baking paper.

Prepare the apples: Peel, core and slice the apples into 5mm half-moons. I used my apple peeler/corer/slicer for this – if there was ever an apparently un-useful piece of kitchen gadgetry which has proved it’s worth time and time again, it’s this little machine.

Make the Streusel: Combine the flour, cinnamon and butter in a bowl, and use a pastry cutter or fork to ‘cut’ the butter into the dry ingredients. Get murderous with it. Eventually, if your butter is cold enough, if will resemble fine breadcrumbs. If the butter (or kitchen) is too warm, it may clump together – don’t worry – you’ll just end up with a streusel that looks like mine!

Once you’ve reached the fine crumb stage, mix in the sugar and hazelnuts. Set aside.

Make the cake: In a large mixing bowl, combine the yogurt, eggs, vanilla, oil and sugar – stirring to combine (yeah, this is one of those nice easy cakes to prepare!)

Over the top of the yogurt mixture, sift the flour and baking powder, and stir to combine. The mixture may look slightly lumpy on account of the yogurt, which is fine – but make sure those lumps aren’t flour, which is not fine. Just squeeze one between your fingers to tell.

Pour the batter into the prepared tin, smoothing the surface slightly.

Lay the apples in an even layer over the batter.

Sprinkle the streusel evenly over the top.

Bake in the oven for 45-55mins, or until a skewer comes out clean.

Allow to cool, then devour.


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