Ray is my fav. Every now and then one of his recipes leaps out, grabs me and demands that I make it. In this week's Sunday Star-Times he published a recipe called Torta Di Mele (Apple Cake). He describes it as '...simply a batter holding together sliced apples.' What a gift this man has - I consider him a fantastic writer, as well as an inspired cook. The research into different cuisines, as well as the techniques he use mean that his recipes are lovely to read, and often a real joy to cook.
I made this within four hours of reading the recipe! It is delicious, and would be awesome with cream or yoghurt. It was just as nice the next day, and the fennel makes it really interesting. A classic for a cold Sunday afternoon or evening.
Torta Di Mele - Apple Cake (Ray McVinnie, Sunday Star-Times 10 April 2011)
100g caster sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
3 eggs (I used size 7)
1tsp vanilla extract
zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp baking powder
4 apples, peeled, cored, thinly sliced (I used granny smith)
Preheat the oven to 180C. Butter and paper the bottom and sides of a 23cm diametre loose bottomed cake tin. Beat the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the vanilla, zest, fennel, flour and baking powder, then stir in the apple slices. Allow to sit for ten minutes, then sprinkle well with sugar, place in the oven and bake for 45-50 mins until very well cooked. Remove from the oven and serve in wedges warm or cold. It is best to slightly overcook the cake as the juice from the apples will make it wet when cold.