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Author Notes: This recipe came from the New York Times Magazine section published on October 8, 1989. My friends were having a baby shower for me the following weekend, and since I love pecans, apple and cinnamon I immediately decided to make it for the party. When I got there, my friend Carol Anne had made it too. Both cakes were delicious variations on the same theme. Since the cake now had a provenance I made it often for occasions, including in the shape of a dinosaur and a pirate for my son's birthday when he was little. It's still a family favorite, and a serious crowd pleaser. I've handed out this recipe many times. It tastes rich but is surpisingly low cal for a cake, until you add the caramel sauce! —rocombo
Makes 1 9" cake
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 5 medium apples chopped (to yield 2.5-3 cups)
- 1/2 cup butter at room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg (scant)
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup butter HOT CARAMEL SAUCE
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup evaporated milk
- To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the pecans in the workbowl of a food processor and process until fine. Set aside.
- Peel, core and quarter the apples and place them in the workbowl of the processor until they are medium coarse shards, about the size of almonds. Set aside.
- Place the butter in a large mixing bowl, add the sugar and beat until fluffy. Add the egg and beat until blended.
- Add the soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and mix quickly. Add the flour and just blend, then add the apples and the nuts.
- Pour the mixture into a greased 9” round cake pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the top springs back when slightly touched with a finger. Cool slightly. The center may sink a bit.
- FOR THE HOT CARAMEL SAUCE: To make the caramel sauce, melt the butter, brown sugar and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring with a whisk.
- Remove from the heat and add the vanilla and condensed milk. Stir again with the whisk. Cool slightly.
- TO SERVE: Cut the cake into slices and serve, ladling the caramel sauce over each slice, topped by a dollop of whipped cream or vanilla or butter pecan ice cream. The sauce can be made ahead of time and warmed up.