Yesterday was Apple Day, as I was reminded by Creative Countryside magazine – a day dedicated to celebrating the unsung hero of the fruit bowl! I think apples can get a bad rep as boring because they form a lunchbox staple, munched all year round. I strongly believe there’s nothing better than British apples at the height of their season – now – as the taste is far superior to the forced or imported fruit available for the rest of the year. My all-time favourite, and my Mum’s, is Cox’s Orange Pippin: Autumn in every mouthful. I was looking for an apple recipe my Mum could enjoy too and came across this Jamie Oliver recipe for vegan toffee apple upside down cake. If you weren’t told, you would have no idea that it’s vegan, and it works so well – moist with apple, crunchy walnuts and delicious toffee-rich topping, complete with sliced apple on top. It is fairly quick and simple to whip up too, making the most of the seasonal fruit at its absolute best. To make the vegan toffee apple upside down cake, you will need:
25g vegan margarine, plus extra for greasing
3 eating apples
195g muscovado sugar
180g plain flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 1/2 teaspoons mixed spice
80ml sunflower oil
1 tesapoon vinegar
Preheat the oven to 180C/ 160C Fan/ Gas 4 and grease and line the base of a 23cm square cake tin. Core and coarsely grate 2 of the apples and finely slice the remaining apple. Melt 85g of the sugar and the margarine in a pan, then pour into the prepared tin.
Top with the sliced apple in a single layer.
Combine the flour, 110g of sugar, the bicarbonate of soda and mixed spice in a bowl.
In a separate bowl, combine the oil, 180ml water, the vinegar, grated apple and lemon zest. Mix the dry ingredients with the wet, quickly but thoroughly.
Roughly chop and stir in the walnuts, then pour over the layer of apples in the cake tin.
Bake for 30 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean – mine took a little longer. Leave the cake to cool for 5 minutes before turning out.
Cut into squares and serve!
The vegan toffee apple upside down cake is delicious served warm with custard and obligatory cup of tea.