Fall is my favorite time of the year. Watching the leaves change color, visiting apple orchards and pumpkin patches, watching the sun sink over the horizon on a walk with the smell of a fireplace in the air.
I do idealize this season a little. I remember the good things and ignore the bad. Like the fact that there are days where my eyes itch so bad that they won’t stop watering. That the sun has set before I get off work and the weather has gotten progressively colder forcing me inside. The more I’m forced inside the more time I experiment in the kitchen.
There was one day where the wind was too bitter to go outside, and I knew I needed to heat up the oven. This recipe is a combination of my dad’s old-fashioned oatmeal cake an apple cake my mom made when I was little. I combined and altered them a little bit to achieve a healthier spin on it. I used Greek yogurt in place of oil or butter, substituted wheat flour for half the white flour, and I cut the sugar, although I think it could be a cut a little more. The result is a moist, dense, spicy cake.
The original recipe for the oatmeal cake called for a sweetened condensed milk and toasted coconut topping, but I opted to leave it off. Instead I placed roasted apple rings on top and dusted it with powdered sugar. A cream cheese frosting or streusel topping might be good options too.
This treat would be the perfect reward after a fall walk of crunching through the leaves as you warm up next to a crackling fire with tissues in hand for those fall allergy sniffles while watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" on TV.
Oatmeal Apple Cake
1 1/2 cup boiling water
1 1/2 old fashioned or regular oatmeal (not quick cooking)
1/2 cup Greek yogurt (could use oil or butter instead)
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup white flour (Could also use 1/2 cup wheat flour and 1/2 cup white flour)
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3 cups thinly sliced or chopped apples (about 2 large apples)
1/2 cup walnuts chopped
Powdered sugar or other choice of topping for the cake
1. Set oven to 350. Grease two round pans or a regular cake pan.
2. Pour boiling water over oatmeal and let stand 15 minutes.
3. Beat sugars, yogurt, eggs, and vanilla.
4. Combine flour, salt, cinnamon, and baking soda. Mix into the wet ingredients.
5. Add the oatmeal and combine.
6. Fold in the apples and walnuts.
7. Add the batter to the pans and bake for 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
8. Dust with powdered sugar or add other toppings when cake has completely cooled.
9. Enjoy :)
Roasted Apple Circles
This was also an experiment and they turned out really delicious, but it is not an exact science. My intentions were to dehydrate the apples at a low heat over the span of a couple hours. I think the temperature could have been increased to cook the apples for 30 to 45 minutes. Below is the steps that I ended up taking for this experiment.
Cinnamon and Sugar
1. Heat oven to 250.
2. Cut apple in thin circles. Remove seeds.
(You can cut the apples in another fashion, but I wanted the look of the circles with the star in the middle.)
3. Dust the apples on both sides with cinnamon and sugar and a dash of salt,
4. Place apples on wire cooling rack. Place the wire rack on a cookie sheet.
5. Cook in the oven for a couple hours depending on the thickness of the apples.
(Or increase temperature to 350 and cook for 30-45 minutes)