Well it’s about time I got round to sorting out my Cornwall posts; it’s not like it’s been over a month since we went. And I know it’s just the other end of the M5 and along the A30 (makes it sound so close, but it’s one long slog of a drive); but it seems like an eternity ago. Cornwall for all of the British weather’s faults, is one of my happy places. It is full of memories of childhood sea-side holidays, teenage discoveries and a significant portion of my 20s revolving around Newquay, Beetles, music and the annual pilgrimage to Trevelgue for Run to the Sun.
Oh those were the days; cruising in a soft top 1963 Bug in the day and staggering out of the Central and Sailor Arms on to a beach party in the evening! The memories of the mis-spent days of my youth will always remain. And although I’m sure I wouldn’t be able to keep up with the pace any more, a part of me smiles inside knowing that while it lasted, it was epic!
Newquay now, still looks pretty much the same; the Central and Sailors are still there, the infamous Magic Bus shop and Fat Willy’s surf shack, but looking a lot more shack now. It had been a good 12+ years since I had navigated the one way system; but I was quietly pleased with myself that I could still direct Ian and find the carpark. Feeling very grown up, and not living it up in a tent or packed into a caravan, we stayed with my gorgeous friends for the week, in their beautiful house, and for someone who is not particularly green-fingered their garden-envy-inducing spot of tranquility and calm. A laid-back and much needed summer break ensued, partaking in more than my fair share of food and wine (oops!) but even I couldn’t resist a little spot of baking to go with a fine Sunday roast dinner. Inspired by the famous pasty, that was probably a little responsible for my holiday-weight gain, I decided to take a spin with a traditional sweet pasty filling: Apple and Blackberry.
Now before you all cry “Louise, but that’s an autumn flavour combo.” Yes, I know they are, but there was also plenty in H’s freezer, so nah nah! I’ve put together this autumnal bake in the middle of summer so you can get ready for your autumn baking sooner. See there’s method in my madness…. Well probably not but you understand, don’t you??
Anyway, it was decided on apple and blackberry cake, but I was trying to capture a little something more of a pasty with the cake. With it being a Sunday afternoon, it was a little of a cupboard raid and a whip it up and see what happens. That’s when I decided on crumble! Still inspired by the pasty, with the fruit but pasty wasn’t going to work with a cake, but a crumble topping would, surely??
Well, actually, yes it does work. I’ll like to say that it worked as I was expecting it to, but it didn’t quite do so; but only aesthetically and no way hindering any taste.
I’d decided to sprinkle the crumble topping on top of the cake batter before it went into the oven. So when the cake batter started to rise and bake, it rose over the crumble and some therefore ended up folded inside. Ideally, I wanted the crumble to form a crust over the top of the cake, and of course this didn’t happen. So in hindsight, it would probably be best to half bake the cake, sprinkle over the crumble topping and finish off baking; that way the cake has already pretty much risen and settled, yet the crumble topping is still baked through, and hopefully would have that crunchy, crumble texture.
But I’ll let you give that a go and see what happens. In the meantime, the way I did it still works…
Apple & Blackberry Crumble Cake
A crunchy crumble topped apple and blackberry cake, perfect for an afternoon treat, anytime of year.
For the cake
- 150g Self-raising flour
- 125g Golden caster sugar
- 125g Unsalted butter
- 3 Eggs, medium
- 1 tsp Vanilla extract
- 75g Apple, cored, peeled and sliced
- 50g Blackberries
For the crumble
- 75g Plain flour
- 75g Porridge oats
- 75g Dark muscovado sugar
- 40g Unsalted butter
- 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 180C or 160C (fan).
- Line an 8 inch cake tin with baking parchment.
- Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until softened. Alternatively, you can make the cake batter, in a large mixing bowl, by hand or with an electric hand whisk.
- Add the caster sugar to the softened butter and cream until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, to the creamed mixture. Beat well between adding each egg.
- Add the vanilla extract, and mix until well combined.
- Sift the flour and baking powder together, and add to the mixture. Gently mix together until the cake batter is soft and smooth.
- Pour half the cake batter into the lined cake tin, and sprinkle over half the fruit.Pour over the remaining cake batter, and sprinkle over the left over fruit.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes.
- While the cake is baking, make the crumble topping.
- In a separate mixing bowl, add the plain flour, muscovado sugar, unsalted butter and cinnamon.
- Rub together the ingredients with the tips of your fingers, until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add the porridge oats and stir through. then sprinkle over the crumble topping.
- After the first bake, sprinkle over the crumble topping and return the cake to the oven.
- Bake for a further 20-25 minutes, until golden brown or a skewer inserted comes out clean.
- Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool.
- Serve with a dollop of cream or vanilla ice-cream.
The cake can be kept in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days, or can be frozen, for 1 month.