I ended up making this cake twice. Mostly because of a small little glitch in the glaze the first time around when I ended up melting a rubber spatula while stirring because the glaze had boiled up and gotten a lot hotter than I had expected it to. Naturally, this did not occur to me until after I'd had a piece of the cake, fortunately with no ill effects.
While I liked the first cake, it felt a little greasier than I would have liked from all of that oil. So when I remade the cake, I only used 1/2 cup of oil and substituted unsweetened apple sauce for the rest of the oil. I also went with mini square cakes but that was mostly because I have every intention of saving one more piece for myself and taking the other ten pieces to work tomorrow.Also, because of lack of bowl space, I ended up reversing some of the instructions and incorporated the egg mixture into the flour mixture with no ill effects.
My reaction to the revised cake...I actually liked the second cake a lot more. It helped that the brown sugar glaze wasn't toxic this time of course. But what I liked most about it was the fact that the apple sauce seemed to leave a more pronounced apple taste to the cake combined with the diced apple. I would definitely make this cake again using the substitution. Plus, I can rationalize eating more of the cake now that it's healthy for me with all of that fruit. :)
This was a great cake to end with from Southern Cakes.
Fresh Apple Cake with Brown Sugar Glaze
(Recipe from Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott)
Fresh Apple Cake
3 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1½ cups vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups finely chopped apples
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts
Brown Sugar Glaze
1 cup tightly packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp evaporated milk, half-and-half or cream
Method – Fresh Apple Cake
Heat the oven to 350F. Grease a 13 by 9 inch pan or two 8-9 inch cake pans.
In a medium bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. Stir with a fork to mix everything together well.
In a large bowl, beat the eggs with a wooden spoon or a mixer at low speed until pale yellow and foamy. Add the oil and vanilla and beat well. Stir in the flour mixture with a wooden spoon and continue stirring the batter just until the flour disappears. Add the apples and nuts, stir to mix them into the batter until fairly uniform. Scrape the batter into the prepared pans.
Bake for 45-50 minutes or until the cake is golden brown, springs back when touched lightly near the centre and is beginning to pull away from the sides of the pan. Place the cake (still in the pans) on a wire rack and spoon over the glaze while still hot.
Method - Brown Sugar Glaze
Combine all the ingredients in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the mixture comes to a gentle boil. Then cook for 3-5 minutes.
Spoon the hot glaze all over the hot-from-the-oven cake. Let the glazed cake cool completely before serving straight from the pan.