CINNAMON APPLE GATEAU

Makes this unusual cake for an autum celebration. A light sponge is split and filled with a honey and cream cheese layer as well as softy cooked cinnamon apples and sultans, then topped with glazed apples. Keep the sponge, unfilled, for two days in an airtight container; fill and eat it fresh.

Serves 8-10

butter for greasing

3 eggs

1/2 cup superfine sugar

2/3 cup all purpose flour

1 tsp ground cinnamon

For the filling and topping

4 large eating apples

4 tbsp clear honey

1/2 cup  golden raisins

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 1/2 cups soft chesse

4 tbsp crème fraîche

2 tsp lemon juice

3 tbsp apricot jam, strained

mint sprigs, to decorate

1. Preheat the oven to 375 F. Grease and line a 9in round cake pan with baking parchment.

2. Put the eggs and sugar in a bowl and beat with an elctric whisk until thick and mousse like and the beaters leave a trail on the surface.

3. Sift the flour and cinnamon over the egg mixture and carefully fold in with a large spoon.

4. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the cake springs back when lightly pressed in the centre.

5.Slide the knife between the cake and the pan to loosen the edge. then turn the cake on to a wire rack to cool.

6. To make the filling, peel, core and slice three apples and put them in a pan. Add 2 tbsp of the honey and 1 tbsp water. Cover and cook over low heat for 10 minutes, or until the apples have softened.

7.Add the raisins and cinnamon,stir, replace the lid and leave to cool.

8.Put the soft cheese in a bowl with the remaining honey, the  creme fraiche, and half the lemon juice. Beat until smooth.

9. Cut the cake into equal rounds. Put half on a plate and drizzle over any liquid from the apple mixture.

10. Spread with two-thirds of the cheese mixture, then top with the apple filling. Fit the top of the cake in place.

11. Swirl the remaining cheese mixture over the top of the sponge. Core and slice the remaining apple, sprinkle with the lemon juice and use to decorate the edge of the cake. Brush the apple with apricot glaze and place mint sprigs on top to decorate.

 

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