Jewish Apple Walnut Cake

You flavor this Jewish apple walnut cake with cinnamon, orange, and vanilla — be sure to use fresh walnuts. This style of apple cake has long been a popular Jewish dessert. You can use either tart or sweet apples, according to your taste.

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Preparation time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

Yield: 9 servings

Keeping kosher: Pareve

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

4 tablespoons brown sugar

3/4 pound apples, either tart or sweet (about 2 large apples)

2 large eggs

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 1/2 cups flour

1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup orange juice

1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  2. Lightly oil an 8-inch square pan and flour pan lightly.

  3. Mix cinnamon with 2 tablespoons brown sugar.

  4. Pare apples and slice them slightly less than 1/4 inch thick.

  5. Beat eggs lightly in mixer.

  6. Add granulated sugar and remaining brown sugar, and beat on medium speed until the eggs become pale in color.

  7. Add oil and beat to blend.

  8. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

  9. Add about half of flour mixture to batter.

  10. Blend it into batter at low speed.

    Stop to scrape the edges of the bowl a few times.

  11. Add orange juice, orange zest, and vanilla.

  12. Beat briefly to blend.

  13. Add remaining flour mixture and beat in at low speed.

  14. Beat in walnuts at low speed.

  15. Spoon 1/4 of batter into prepared pan and spread evenly.

  16. Arrange 1/3 of apple slices on batter.

  17. Sprinkle apples evenly with 1 heaping teaspoon of cinnamon mixture.

  18. Spoon another 1/4 of the batter in dollops over apples and spread very gently.

    This is a small amount of batter, so don’t worry.

  19. Repeat Steps 16 through 18 with two more layers of apples, cinnamon mixture, and batter, ending with batter.

    It’s fine if the top layer of apples isn’t completely covered with batter.

  20. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in cake’s center comes out dry.

  21. Cool cake in pan on a rack about 20 minutes.

  22. Run a metal spatula carefully around cake and turn out onto rack.

  23. Let cool.

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