Jewish Apple Cake

Have you ever tried Jewish Apple Cake?  I grew up in a predominantly Jewish neighborhood, and supermarkets and Jewish bakeries will always have this cake.  My mom always loved breads and pastries.  Being a Korean and growing up during the Korean War my mom was very progressive for her time.  She always had toast and coffee for breakfast (where other Koreans were having traditional Korean rice breakfasts).  Even living in Japan we were very fortunate to be surrounded by wonderful French, German and Japanese bakeries.  So, it came as no surprise when my mom found different Jewish bakeries in our neighborhood in Philadelphia and started buying Jewish Apple Cakes. 

The other day, my wonderful neighbor friend went to our local Farmer’s Market and bought us a bagful of apples and Asian pears!!  I do not deserve this kindness & generosity, but I gladly accepted the gift.  I started to think what I can make with these apples (aside from eating them raw).  Then I thought of Jewish Apple Cake and it brought back good memories.  Today’s recipe came from The Washington Post.  I just adjusted a little bit with sugar, but the rest is the same. 

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16 servings

MAKE AHEAD: The cake can be made a day or two in advance. It freezes well.

3 cups unsifted flour, plus more for dusting the pan
5 medium apples of your choice, preferably those that are good for baking
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon + 4 Tablespoons sugar for the apples
1-1/2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use nonstick cooking oil spray to grease tall tube pan, then dust lightly with flour.

Core the apples, cut them into wedges and slice them.   Place in a large bowl and sprinkle with the cinnamon and 4 tablespoons of the sugar, tossing to coat evenly.

Beat the eggs in the bowl of a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer, on low speed, until well blended. Gradually add sugar, then the oil, orange juice and vanilla extract.

Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt on a piece of waxed or parchment paper. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl. On low speed, gradually add the flour mixture to the egg mixture to form a smooth batter.

Pour one-third of the batter into the pan. Create a second layer using one-third of the apples. Repeat to create a total of 6 layers, ending with apples on top. Bake for 1 1/2 hours or as needed; the top should be golden brown, and a toothpick inserted into the cake should come out with a few moist crumbs.

Let the cake sit for at least 20 minutes before unmolding.

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My opinion:  I almost died smelling the incredible aroma wafting through the house as the cake was baking!!  Tasted delicious, and even better the next day!  I think I could have added more apples, but oh well, I’ll do that next time.  If you love apples you’ll definitely love this cake!  Here’s the collage of the cake, I’m kind of playing around with collages so bear with me.

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