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A FABULOUS Apple Cake...And a study of baking pans! (Long)

Discussion in 'Egg, Chicken, & Other Favorite Recipes' started by msgenie516, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. msgenie516

    msgenie516 The Happy Hen

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    May 16, 2008
    Nesconset, LI, NY
    Hi,

    I have to admit that I didn’t create this recipe but I have made it a few times and it is wonderful. I found it in my Taste Of Home Baking Book and each time I have made it, I have received "rave reviews". Even my annoyingly picky DH loves it! [​IMG] It is called “Adams County Apple Bundt”. Please don’t let the name mislead you (as I did) and use a standard Bundt pan, as it will be too small. You will need the larger 10” tube pan.

    The following observations could be VERY IMPORTANT to you, so please read…

    There are some things I should tell you about this recipe. First of all, the batter will be VERY sticky, kind of reminds me of thick paste glue. The first time I made this cake I was convinced that the batter was too heavy to rise. I was very apprehensive when I put it in the oven, but it baked perfectly.

    I found that I got the best results when I left the chilled ingredients (the eggs and orange juice) out on the counter for several hours to get them up to room temperature before making the cake. I broke the eggs open into a bowl and covered it and left the orange juice in a covered cup. However, the crust was very dark and hard (it is not THAT BAD and this does improve if the cake is left covered overnight and eaten the next day). I believe part of this is due to the long baking time (1 ½ hours) plus the fact that I used a pan with a dark coating. So when I made it again, I reduced the temperature of the oven to 335 degrees and I felt the results were much better.

    Since I had nothing else, the first two times I used a Silverstone Bundt pan. I sprayed it with Pam cooking spray (found out later that you’re not supposed to do this with Silverstone coated bake ware) and the cake released from the pan perfectly. But I quickly became tired of having a cake that rose way above the capacity of the pan. So I went out and purchased a Nordic Ware non-stick coated 10” tube pan.

    Then my troubles REALLY began! [​IMG] No matter what I did, the cake stuck hopelessly to the pan. I used Pam but then decided that perhaps the different shape of the pan contributed to the sticking and I needed to use a different method. So the next time, I HEAVILY greased and floured the pan and lined the bottom (the area where the cake stuck the worst) with parchment paper. The ONLY part that released from the pan was the area lined with parchment paper. The sides still stuck terribly.

    By this time, I became very discouraged and desperate. After spending $14.99 on the Nordic Ware pan, it nearly killed me (well, not KILLED me, but I was very upset) to spend another $19.99 on a Calphalon non-stick tube pan. I chose this brand as I have always had good results with Calphalon bake ware (should have done it the first time). Even though the cake did not stick in the Silverstone pan (the one that was too small), I didn’t choose that brand as I was now aware how “finicky” this finish can be in regard to the type of product that is used to grease the pan. With Calphalon, you can use anything.

    Just to be on the safe side, I searched the internet to find more ways to avoid this problem and I found a recipe for a concoction called “Baker’s Grease”. This is what I found on a baking forum:

    “My favorite fool proof pan grease is something called "baker's grease". You take equal parts vegetable oil, shortening and flour, mix them together, and you have a wonderful grease that works great. You can spread it in your pan with a pastry brush, or use your hands. I love it.....it's all I ever use when I bake cakes.”

    So I went ahead and measured two tablespoons of each of the three ingredients and blended them with a small whisk and coated my new pan with it and refrigerated the leftovers--I imagine I can put this in the microwave for a few seconds when I need it again. I also placed another round of parchment paper on the bottom. I went ahead and assembled the cake and baked it and, unbelievably, it literally FELL out of the pan! [​IMG] It came out so easily that I am now convinced that the finish on the Nordic Ware pan is either just not up to par or defective. The baker’s grease and parchment paper certainly must have helped, but I’m sure the pan was the major problem.

    Believe me, I was nearly ready to give up, but this cake is SO WORTH IT! And, hey, I did learn a few things! So here goes, the Adams County Apple Bundt…

    Ingredients:
    3 cups all-purpose flour
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    2 cups plus 5 tablespoons sugar, divided
    1 cup vegetable oil
    4 eggs
    1/3 cup orange juice
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    2-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    4 medium tart apples, peeled and thinly sliced
    2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    Confectioners' sugar, optional

    Directions:

    In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, 2 cups of the sugar, oil, eggs, orange juice, salt and vanilla. Beat until thoroughly combined. In another bowl, toss apples with cinnamon and remaining sugar. Spread one-third of batter in a greased 10-in. tube pan. Cover with half of the apples. Repeat layers. Spoon remaining batter over top.

    Bake at 350° for 1-1/2 hours or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 20 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely. Just before serving, dust with confectioners' sugar if desired. Yield: 12-16 servings.

    Enjoy! Genie [​IMG]

    Edited to say: I wanted to add that this cake is flavorful but not overly sweet (even though I dust it generously with confectioners's sugar) and makes a great, packable lunchbox treat!
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2009
  2. Renee

    Renee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2008
    CALIFORNIA
    This sounds delicious! Perhaps I need a tube pan...
     
  3. The Chicken Lady

    The Chicken Lady Moderator Staff Member

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    Apr 21, 2008
    West Michigan
    If you have a crafts store near you that sells Wilton things, I highly recommend the Wilton Cake Release product for greasing your pans. It's amazing how great it works.
     
  4. msgenie516

    msgenie516 The Happy Hen

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    May 16, 2008
    Nesconset, LI, NY
    Quote:Thank you for your suggestion! You know, I just looked in my baking supply cabinet (this baking obsession is so bad around here that I have a cabinet so full of supplies that half the time I have to remove a bunch of things just to find something and other times I have completely forgotten what I have--it's just that I like to be prepared for anything) and I found a can of Wilton Bake Easy! Non-Stick Spray. On the can is written "Perfect cake release every time! Great for all baking & cooking." This is one of the things I completely forgot I have, and I don't have it all that long. Probably getting old and feeble! [​IMG] Is this the product you are referring to?

    I will definately try this the next time I bake a cake but I will NEVER use that Nordic Ware pan again. The non-stick surface has dulled in the places where the cake stuck the worst and I don't want to risk going through all the trouble of preparing a cake to have it stick again, especially since I now have the dependable Calphalon pan. The Nordic Ware pan is going in my next garage sale or maybe straight to the trash, if I feel too guilty to pass this problem on to someone else! I probably can only get $1.00-$2.00 for it anyway.

    Thanks again for your suggestion, it made me go through my cabinet and I found some interesting things! Genie
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2009
  5. msgenie516

    msgenie516 The Happy Hen

    575
    3
    141
    May 16, 2008
    Nesconset, LI, NY
    Hi,

    Just an update! I mentioned to my daughter that I was disposing of the Nordic Ware pan and she asked if she could use it. Of course, I said not only could she use it, but she could keep it if she liked it. She was planning on preparing a cake mix and baking it in the pan.

    She only used Pam for grease and the cake released easily. I was suspicious of this before but now I am convinced that the sugary apple juice syrup that oozed from the cake was what caused it to stick so badly. So I feel the only way to find out if something works well is put it to a REAL test, and that is what I unknowingly did with baking the apple cake in the Nordic Ware pan. The non-stick finish on this pan could not release the cake because of the apple juice/sugar syrup, while this posed no problems to the Silverstone and Calphalon finishes.

    So now she has a pan that she can confidently use for cake mixes and I have my superior Calphalon pan for my more involved recipes. We are both happy and the pan didn't go to waste! [​IMG] Genie

    P.S. I do a lot of baking with fruit--cakes, muffins, etc. and I will definately stay away from Nordic Ware from now on and use only my old reliable Calphalon!
     
  6. orcasislandchickens

    orcasislandchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 9, 2008
    Wow this is a fabulous cake.
     
  7. heyeddah

    heyeddah Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 15, 2008
    Milford Ct
    As a professional baker I just want to say that the Nordicware pans need to be seasoned before use like a cast iron pan. They go in a hot oven and the pores open up and then you seal it with food grade oil. The crumb or crust you get when they are properly seasoned and then used is different from the Calphalon. I love Calphalon too, but don't sell your Nordicware for a buck!!!
     
  8. msgenie516

    msgenie516 The Happy Hen

    575
    3
    141
    May 16, 2008
    Nesconset, LI, NY
    Quote:Hi,

    Thank you for your suggestion! If you read my third post on this thread, you will see the fate of the pan has changed and it now belongs to my daughter and will not be sold.

    I will definately tell her about seasoning the pan, something I never heard of doing to a non-stick coated pan. But one learns something new every day!

    Thanks again! Genie
     

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