Apple Ginger Pudding Cake
Circle B Kitchen
Recipe adapted from Flo Braker via the SF Chronicle
I've noted my changes to this recipe in italics
3-4 medium-sized Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1-inch chunks or slices to yield 4 cups (I used jonogolds and winesaps)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 vanilla bean (optional, I used it, but couldn’t really detect the vanilla)
1 1/2 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup dark corn syrup (I used golden cane syrup)
*4 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger (I used 1 tsp ground ginger)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup water
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons maple syrup
*Note: I'm not a big fan of the strong flavor of fresh ginger in desserts, so opted to use powdered ginger here. But if you like the flavor of fresh ginger, go ahead and use it, but 4 teaspoons seems like a lot to me and it might overpower the other flavors.
INSTRUCTIONS: Apple compote: (you really must use a good cooking apple so this does not turn mushy). Combine the apples, sugar, water and vanilla bean in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook uncovered over medium heat until the apple chunks are tender, about 10 minutes. Resist stirring or smashing the apple pieces. You don't want applesauce. Some of the water will evaporate, but if the mixture is dry add an additional tablespoon or two of water.
Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the apple mixture. Discard the bean. Pour the mixture into a 9-inch square ungreased baking pan, spreading it evenly in the pan. Set aside to cool. (As mentioned above, I did this, but the vanilla was largely unnoticeable in the end).
Batter: Adjust rack in lower third of oven; preheat oven to 350°.
Sift the flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt onto a sheet of wax paper; set aside.
Pour the molasses and corn syrup into a large bowl. Add the ginger, brown sugar and oil; stir to blend. Add the egg; stir to combine. Using a whisk, gradually stir in one quarter of the flour mixture. Then whisk in one third of the water, blending well. Repeat, alternating dry and liquid ingredients, ending with the flour. Scrape the sides of the bowl often, and mix until smooth after each addition. Pour the batter over the apple mixture in the baking pan, spreading it evenly. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan and the top springs back slightly when lightly touched in the center. (Do not overbake so this will be moist and pudding-y). Place the cake pan on a rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.(Definitely warm!)
Topping: Lightly whip the cream with the maple syrup. (I didn't use the maple syrup)
Spoon the pudding cake into bowls and top with a dollop of the whipped cream.