Along the Grapevine

Wild Apple and Walnut Cake

57 Comments

This is my 100th post! It is also Fiesta Friday,  so I wanted to make something special. By special I mean something sweet which can be enjoyed with a glass of wine as easily as a cup of tea, but healthful and light enough that you will still be able to try the other treats at the party.

With all the wild apples almost on my doorstep, I used some to make an apple puree to flavour a walnut based cake, gluten-free and with a dairy free option. I made both versions, and they are equally delicious – with surprisingly little difference even in the texture. DSC01085

I admit these apples are never going to win any awards at a harvest fair. Most of them were picked up off the ground. But I love cooking with them for their tart flavour and dense flesh. Here is one cut open to give you an idea of how nice they can look, even if you wouldn’t likely choose to eat one raw.

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To make the apple sauce, I cut and cored them and removed any bad spots – quite a few. I then covered them with water and simmered them until very soft and put them through the food  mill. Because of their colour, they give a very rosy sauce which I know is free of any chemicals or additives.

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This cake is completely original, and I am pleased with the texture and flavour. It is, after all, mostly a mixture of fruit, nuts and seeds with only honey as a sweetener. It is great on its own, but a honey glaze or other sweet topping just makes it that much more special. I made a glaze with honey and rose geranium leaves, since I am still experimenting with this winning combination of flavours which I first used in last week’s jelly.

 

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Wild Apple and Walnut Cake

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients

1/2 cup oil

2 eggs, separated (or 2 Tbsp chia seeds)

1/2 cup liquid honey

1 1/2 cups apple sauce

1 cup ground walnuts

1/4 cup coconut flour, sifted

1/2 cup flax seeds, ground

2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp salt

Method

Mix the dry ingredients together. In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks and add the oil, honey and apple sauce. Beat the egg whites in another bowl until they are stiff but not dry.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. When thoroughly mixed, fold in the egg whites.

If not using eggs, mix the flax seeds into the wet ingredients and let sit a couple of minutes before adding to the dry ingredients.

Pour the batter into a prepared tin, and bake at 325 degrees for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the cake springs back when poked.

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For the glaze, I infused some water with a few geranium leaves by simmering them together for five minutes. I then mixed equal amounts of liquid honey and the infused water (about 1/3 cup each) and brought it to a boil for another five minutes. Drizzle cooled mixture over the cake.

This cake is good any time of day and would make a great treat in packed school lunches – if you don’t mind sharing it.

 

Author: Hilda

I am a backyard forager who likes to share recipes using the wild edibles of our area.

57 thoughts on “Wild Apple and Walnut Cake

  1. Congratulations Hilda and please keep these inventive and tasty ideas coming.I am a fan.

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  2. As I was reading through the recipe I realized that not only do I have all the ingredients, but how often we may be able to make things we would never think of, with what’s on hand. While we were in Oregon, there were tons of wild apples around and also for sale. The last day when we turned in our bicycles, the owner had a huge bin of them to just take and we took a few . . . he cautioned that they were tart and oh.my.gosh! I could barely eat them! And it wasn’t because I don’t like the flavor but because it was doing weird things to my face and cheeks! Just today we have the first of honey crisp apples at my farmer’s market — so exciting, even though they are not “wild” they are slightly tart and good for all sorts of uses. Thanks again for this recipe Hilda.

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    • I know what you mean about the effect of wild apples when you bite into it. But it is that very quality which makes them so good to cook with. This is the first time I have used them, and am having so much fun.

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  3. oops, and also happy 100th post!!! Congratulations!

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  4. Pingback: Bruschetta or Crostini ?| Fiesta Friday #31 | The Novice Gardener

  5. Beautiful cake Hilda – I love wild apples. Congrats on your 100th post!

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  6. Walnut and apple my favs.. Yuumy cake

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    • Thank you. Walnuts are not commonly ground and used as a flour substitute, but I figured I would give them a try since they are a natural pairing with apple, and they worked beautifully.

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  7. What a wonderful 100th post, Hilda! I really admire your ingenuity and that you use so many ingredients from your surroundings! Your sauce and your cake look absolutely scrumptious! Congrats on this milestone! 😀

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  8. Congratulations on reaching 100, Hilda!! The apples look beautifully rustic and I can almost taste the mouth puckering sourness of them. Love how you made this cake with the ground walnuts and honey! Happy FF!

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  9. Congrats on your 100th post Hilda and what a lovely treat to celebrate the occasion …love apple and walnut combo in here and sounds healthy as well….

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  10. This cake looks wonderful …all yummy ingredients and homemade applesauce! Yum! I will try this recipe soon!!

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  11. Wow…100 posts….congrats….hope you’ll concern bringing this cake to knit group when we next meet…sounds very yummy…

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  12. Happy 100th post! That is a gorgeous cake! I love the idea of using ground walnuts, this is going straight to my to-try list.

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    • Thank you so much. Hope you enjoy it. This cake is wonderful because it is delicious when fresh, but keeps very well, and if anything gets better on the second and third day. In a small household like ours, that is a real plus.

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  13. Congrats on the 100th post, Hilda! Lovely original recipe! Never used coconut flour in baking, wonder how it behaves in eggless bakes…

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  14. congratulations and what a lovely cake! The flaxeeds and honey sound original and delicious 🙂

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  15. Congrats on your 100th post Hilda and what a lovely cake to celebrate! I have homemade applesauce in my fridge & I am going to use it to make this cake! Lovely!!

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  16. Congratulations on your 100th post Hilda! This looks delicious and sounds healthy. I think even my picky younger daughter would eat this. One question: Do you grind the flax seeds or do you buy them ground? If you grind them, how do you do that? Thank you! -Anne Marie

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    • Thanks Anne Marie. I do grind them myself, and I use a coffee grinder. I should get spice grinder, but so far what I have works fine. I use the flax seeds a lot and am growing my own flax which maybe one day I will harvest. You know how one thing leads to another in gardening!

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  17. Happy 100th post, Hilda! And yes, this is a special cake for the occasion. Oh, I just love your blog! All these new things I see and learn and dream for a bite of. 🙂

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  18. Congrats on your 100th post! And this looks divine! 🙂

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  19. Wow! how absolutely gorgeous Hilda, and congrats on your 100th post. I wonder if I’ll ever get there :)). So impressed with your creativity and all that went into the cake. Love it that you picked the fruit off the ground and made this delectable cake! Kudos to you.

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  20. please include me in your fan list ❤ this looks lovely 🙂

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  21. Love your recipes, Hilda! 🙂 and this one seems great to me, but want to specify.. The apple sauce should be not very watery? And can I sub coconut flour with soy or all-purpose flour?

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    • I have to admit, the sauce was a little more watery than I usually do – I thought of cooking it down further, and next time it wasn’t so watery, and the texture was the same. Because the liquid in the cake (except for the honey) is apple sauce, it tends to make the cake lighter. I can’t say for sure, but I expect soy flour would work, and am sure wheat flour would be just as good. I find this cake is really quite flexible, and because it is dense rather than light and fluffy, it just gets better – until it doesn’t that is. Hope this helps somewhat.

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  22. Happy 100th Post!! What a wonderful cake with which to celebrate! Hooray!

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  23. Congrats to you for the 100th post!It’s so rare here to find wild apples, I love their flavour. Whata great cake! Cris

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  24. Congratulations on the 100th post! How time flies! 🙂 Another creative recipe from ingredients most people just throw out. You continue to amaze! ❤

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  25. Big congrats on 100 posts! This cake sounds and looks absolutely delicious! 🙂

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  26. Thanks, Angie. The time has gone by so quickly, and I can’t believe I’ve come up with 100 recipes taken from my garden (mostly) weeds.

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  27. Yum! Packed with goodness – wish I could have a slice!

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  28. This sounds like a wonderful dessert!

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  29. Looks and sounds soo good Hilda!! Loved the post…esp the pics!!!

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  30. Congrats for your 100st post! A perfect occasion for your so deliciously looking cake.

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  31. Yum this looks so good! and congrats on 100 posts!

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  32. Happy 100th post, Hilda. 🙂
    This cake looks SO MOIST, and I love that you uses apple sauce and honey. I usually don’t like ‘healthy’ cake, but this one looks like a winner to me 🙂

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  33. Sorry I’m late Hilda, congratulations on your 100th post, wishing you many more years of blogging. I love your cake with the addition of ground walnut, apple sauce and honey. I like sweet dessert!

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