The last of the leaves are clinging to the trees for dear life, and it feels as though Winter is just around the corner. This time of year calls for warming spice: one of my favourites is star anise, which pairs deliciously with Autumn’s abundant fruit. I decided to experiment with the spice in a seasonal fruit cake – this apple and star anise cake combines the sharp sweetness of apple with aromatic spice and a slight nuttiness from the spelt flour and caramel note from the dark brown sugar. To make the cake, you will need:
75g caster sugar
25g dark brown sugar
75g self-raising flour
25g spelt flour
1/2 tsp ground star anise
2 apples, one chopped into chunks and one sliced thinly for the top (keep the skin on)
1 tbsp demerara sugar.
Preheat the oven to 180C/ Fan 160C/ 350F/ Gas 4. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then beat in the eggs one at a time with a little flour.
Gently fold in the remaining flour, followed by the chopped apple.
Pour the mixture into a greased and lined 20cm cake tin. Decorate the top with the thinly sliced apple, gently pressing it into the surface.
Sprinkle with the demerara sugar and bake for 50 – 55 minutes until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack.
Delicious served warm with custard for an Autumn dessert.
Recipe by me! Click here to see more of my apple recipes.