Dutch Apple Cake

As a part of my Christmas gift, in addition to some amazingly awesome Wüsthof knives and the fact that he built us a freaking bed {more on that later}, the Kiwi has agreed to share the recipe for one of his family’s Christmas traditions—Dutch Apple Cake. Am I one lucky girl or what? 

But back to the apple cake, this stuff is delicious. You’re going to want to go ahead and make it immediately. It’s Christmas… in your mouth.


My Grandparents were from the Netherlands, and this recipe has always been a staple of my Dad’s baking. When I was young I used to help him make it—a favourite challenge was to try to peel a whole apple in a single continuous spiral. And then eat it likewise. Later on I learned to make it myself, and it became a staple for any occasion requiring a cake in the Autumn or early Winter, when apples are fresh and those delicious cinnamon spices taste just perfect. Dad always makes one of these at Christmas too, though of course that falls in the middle of Summer in New Zealand.

Now that I find myself in the northern hemisphere, Christmas coincides with the perfect season for apple cake, so there’s even more reason to make it. In fact, after serving it to Lauren’s family at Christmas lunch yesterday, I’ve been put on notice that this will be My Job every Christmas for the foreseeable future.

By the way, making whipped cream is trivial as long as you have electric beaters—and you don’t need to add a truckload of sugar. If your whipped cream comes out of a can you’re doing it wrong, and that goes double if the can doesn’t actually contain any cream, in the sense of having come out of a cow.

You might think of this as more of a pie than a cake. I just think of it as delicious.

Dutch Apple Cake from Kiwi and Peach

Dutch Apple Cake

The Crust
¾ cup sugar
225g {8 ounces} butter
2⅔ cups self raising flour

The Filling
5 Granny Smith apples
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp self raising flour
1 heaped teaspoon cinnamon
1 egg

Whipped Cream
300mL {1/2 pint} cream
1 tsp sugar

Cream the butter and the sugar. {Melting the butter in the microwave makes this easy.} Then mix in the flour until it forms a dough. Expect to use your hands. Form the dough into a blob, wrap it in Glad wrap and put it in the fridge to chill while you prepare the filling.

Peel the apples, remove the cores. Over a large mixing bowl, cut them into cubes of about 1cm. Add the sugar, flour and cinnamon. Beat the egg and add half of it to the filling to bind the dry ingredients. Reserve the other half of the egg for glazing at the end.

Start preheating your oven to 180°C/355°F.

Butter a 9 inch expandable cake pan, or something of roughly equivalent size {ideally with a removable bottom}. Take around ⅝ of the dough from the fridge and press it out to cover the bottom of the tin and about an inch up the sides. Pour the filling in and pat it down with a fork until it is roughly level.

It’s at this point that Dad would let me eat whatever filling mixture was left over that wouldn’t fit in the cake. {I’m pretty sure he adds an extra apple to ensure overflow.} Don’t try this at home, kids! Remember, we’re not at home to Mr. Salmonella. {Though the risk is not high, it’s pretty unpleasant if you win the lottery.}

Roll or press out the remaining dough into a layer of about the same thickness as the sides/bottom of the cake. Cut it into strips about 1½ cm wide and lay them on top of the cake in a latticework arrangement. It’s fine to join together shorter strips, and at some point you’ll probably have to recombine the remnants and roll them out again—just beware, once it warms up the dough becomes very difficult to work with. Bonus: you get to eat any leftovers.

Sprinkle the top of the cake lightly with a little more cinnamon, then brush the remaining egg over the top with a pastry brush.

Bake at 180°C {355°F} for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Serve warm {outstanding} or cold {still very good} with freshly-whipped cream.

Dutch Apple Cake from Kiwi and Peach

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3 thoughts on “Dutch Apple Cake

  1. Pingback: Oliebollen: A New Year Staple | Kiwi + Peach

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