Sunday, October 4, 2009

Flourless Spiced Apple and Almond Tea Cake

A couple weeks ago I came across Flourless Apple and Almond Tea Cake at Citrus and Candy. The recipe seemed simple enough to follow and would be a perfect mid-day snack when I'm needing an energy boost.

In order to cut cost (since I bought most of my ingredients at Whole Foods), I decided to make my own almond meal by grinding the almonds in the food processor. It turned out delicious, but unfortunately was on the crumbly side because I couldn't grind the almond meal small enough. Next time I'll make it easy on myself and buy the almond flour, hopefully then it will turn out better. Lesson learned... In baking, just follow the recipe and not improvise like in cooking.

Here's the recipe according to Citrus and Candy, with the changes that I made:

3 small apples - cored and cut into 8 wedges
30g (1.06 oz) unsalted butter
4 cloves (the original recipe only calls for 2)
4 cardamom (my addition)
50g (1.76 oz) raw caster sugar (I use powdered sugar, a mistake here. Maybe using regular sugar will be better?)
75g (2.65 oz or 1/2 cup) raisins

260g (9.17 oz) almond meal
220g (7.76 oz) almond
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 teaspoons ground ginger (the original recipe only calls for 2)
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg (my addition)
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (my addition)
4 eggs
230g (8.11 oz) raw caster sugar (I used regular sugar)
125ml (1/2 cup) maple syrup

Apple and Almond Topping
2 red gala or granny smith apples - cored and thinly sliced
50g (1.76 oz) almonds, roughly chopped
20g (0.70 oz) unsalted butter - melted and slightly cooled
sprinkles of raw turbinado sugar

  • In a pan large enough to fit the apples in a single layer, melt the butter over medium heat and add the apples, cloves, cardamoms and sugar and mix to coat.
  • Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until apples are starting to color and softened.
  • Remove the cloves and cardamoms, and add raisins and stir for a minute or two until raisins have softened.
  • Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
  • Preheat the oven to 160C (325F) and grease and line a 10-inch springform tin with baking paper.
  • In a food processor, pulse the almond meal, almonds, baking powder, ground ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon until roughly chopped. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar and maple syrup until thick, pale and fluffy - at least 5 minutes with an electric mixer. Note: After 5 minutes, mine still looked a bit watery and didn't get thicken up.
  • Add the almond nut mixture and gently fold to combine.
  • Add the apple mixture and gently fold to incorporate. Pour into a cake tin.
  • Arrange the apple slices on top of the cake batter, overlapping a little to make a decorative circular pattern. Sprinkle the nuts over, drizzle with melted butter and scatter with sugars.
  • Bake in the oven for 60-75 minutes (mine was closer to 75 minutes) until skewer comes out clean of cake batter.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool completely in the cake pan before slicing and serving.


  1. Hi VW! Just thought I'll reply to your comment here because I couldn't find an email address.

    Buying the almond meal should make for a less crumbly and smoother textured cake because as you said, us humble folks at home could never process the almonds fine enough.

    This cake is really super moist but that means that it can sometimes turn into sogginess (I've had it happen on bad days!). Here are some tips that could help reduce the moisture:

    *You could add a little more almond flour to the cake.

    * When you add the cooked apples to the cake mix, try not to add the excess liquid/caramel in the pan because the apples would be moist enough. After you cook the apples, you could always drain it instead of leaving it to cool in the pan.

    * Instead of folding the apples through the whole cake mix - you could add half the batter to the pan, then layer the cooked apples on top, then top with the remaining batter. This might make the cake more 'together' and less prone to breaking and crumbling around the apples?

    * You could omit or reduce the melted butter drizzle.

    I hope this helps you out a bit! Let me know how you go. :)

  2. This is incredible looking...I bet the kitchen smelled amazing!