Alternative to brandy/calvados


I'm planning to make this recipe without alcohol. What could be used instead of brandy or Calvados? It could sound crazy, but I think coffee could be amazing, to soak the dates!

Mathieu Garcia
Heavenly Apple Brandy Cake
Recipe question for: Heavenly Apple Brandy Cake


dinner A. October 15, 2020
The brandy-soaked fruit is really what seems to distinguish this cake from other apple cakes. It seems like it would be unusually sweet without the liquor to cut the sugar. Perhaps consider another apple cake that doesn't highlight brandy as a flavor?
This cake is popular on this site, although I've never made it:

My personal favorite among apple cakes is here:

If you're set on this recipe, I'd second Miss_Karen's suggestion that you soak the fruit in tea since it wouldn't add even more sweetness and the tannic flavor might also offset the sweetness.
Miss_Karen October 13, 2020
You could use boiled cider,it's thick & syrupy. Or, spiced cider would work also. I would do Earl Grey tea or Constant Comment tea, before coffee. Coffee & apples....? No thanks.
Happygoin October 13, 2020
I think I'd use fresh apple cider if available. If not, apple juice would work. Not sure about coffee...but experimenting can be fun.
Nancy October 13, 2020
Yes to experimenting and fresh apple cider.
Also, consider quality white grape juice or stone fruit juice (apricot, plum, peach).
Recommended by Food52