Brown butter and almond cake with mulled cider compote and calvados cream

Brown butter and almond cake with mulled cider compote and calvados cream
  • Serves icon Serves 9-12
  • Time icon Takes 45 min to make, 25 min to cook, plus cooling

This rich brown butter cake recipe makes the perfect festive dessert and comes topped off with a boozy, easy-to-make calvados-spiked cream.

Nutrition: per serving

Calories
518kcals
Fat
37g (20g saturated)
Protein
5.1g
Carbohydrates
36.9g (33.4g sugars)
Fibre
2.1g
Salt
0.3g
Calories
518kcals
Fat
37g (20g saturated)
Protein
5.1g
Carbohydrates
36.9g (33.4g sugars)
Fibre
2.1g
Salt
0.3g

Ingredients

For the cake

  • 150g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 50g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 3 medium free-range eggs
  • 150g light brown soft sugar
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • 100g ground almonds
  • Ground cinnamon to dust (optional)

For the compote

  • 4 braeburn apples, peeled, cored and cut into chunks
  • 1 bramley apple, peeled, cored and cut into chunks
  • 350ml medium-dry cider
  • 50ml calvados
  • 2 pieces stem ginger in syrup, finely chopped
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 blades mace
  • 1 tsp ground mixed spice

For the calvados cream

  • Equal quantities of calvados and caster sugar, to taste (2-5 tbsp)
  • 450ml double cream

Method

  1. Grease a 21cm square cake tin with butter, then dust lightly with flour and line the base with baking paper. Melt the butter in a heavy-based saucepan, then bubble briskly until the milk solids sink to the bottom and turn brown and the butter smells biscuity. Remove from the heat, then pour the contents of the pan into a bowl.
  2. Whisk the eggs and sugar together in a large mixing bowl with an electric hand whisk until light and airy, then stir through the brown butter and flour along with the baking powder and ground almonds. Make sure the mixture is smooth. Set aside for 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan160°C/gas 4.
  3. Pour the batter into the prepared tin. Bake for 25 minutes until golden on top and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then invert onto a cooling rack and leave to cool for another 30 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, make the compote. Put all the ingredients into a pan, then cook over a medium heat, stirring often, until soft, golden and sticky. Remove the cinnamon stick and mace, then leave to cool.
  5. Stir the calvados and sugar (start with 2 tbsp of each, then add more) into the cream until you’re happy with the flavour, then whip the boozy sweet cream until soft and billowy.
  6. Cut the cake into pieces and serve with the compote and cream, dusted with cinnamon, if you like.

delicious. tips

  1. It’s best to use a pale-based pan when browning butter so you can see what’s happening to the butter solids. Don’t worry if the cake sinks a little in the middle, it’ll still taste fantastic.

    Use any leftover compote to top yogurt or porridge for breakfast.

  2. You can make the compote 2-3 days in advance, then keep it in the fridge, covered. Warm through before serving.

    Freeeze the cooked cake, wrapped in cling film, for up to 1 month. Defrost completely, cut into squares, then warm each one through in the microwave for 15 seconds to serve.

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