Saturday, 13 August 2016


My next tray bake tale takes inspiration from the bakewell tart by using flaked almonds and almond extract to create a delicious moist sponge that has a little surprise hidden inside. A layer of cinnamon coated apples is baked inside the cake that adds an extra dimension to the more traditional plain tray bake sponge. This hybrid of an apple pie and the bakewell tart is another baked treat that you can add to your repertoire of tray bakes that you will keep coming back to time and time again. Served warm with a dollop of ice cream, well that's perfection!

So the same rule applies with all my other tray bakes, don't mess with the quantities of the sponge. Baking is a science and messing around with the ingredients will only lead to trouble.

What you can change are the apples. By this I mean you can use any variety that you like. I used braeburns and they worked a treat but if you prefer a different variety then go for your life. If you want to mix it up you could also use pears instead of apples if you like. Don't use anything however that is going to leak lots of juice into the sponge batter otherwise you will end up with a soggy cake. You also don't have to sprinkle the cinnamon in either if you don't like it. Why try some mixed spice or all spice instead. Do make sure you add the lemon juice to the apples though, it stops the apples going brown and mushy.

The great thing about this tray bake is that unlike all my other recipes it's free of an icing on top making it much more light for an afternoon treat. The flaked almonds also give the cake a delightful little crunch as well. If you want to ice the tray bake you can. Try making a maple syrup flavored icing to spread on top as I think that will really compliment the apples. You can then toast and sprinkle the almonds over the icing to keep that little bit of crunch.

Lets get baking. Again, after you have prepared the apples all you need to do again is basically chuck everything in a bowl and beat. Simple, effective and ever so yummy.

Apple, Almond And Cinnamon Traybake

450g Peeled And Cored Apples Cut Into Thin Slices
Juice Of 1/2 Lemon
2 Tsp Ground Cinnamon
225g Melted Butter
350g Light Muscavado Sugar
350g Self Raising Flour
2 Tsp Baking Powder
4 Whole Eggs
1 Tsp Almond Extract
Handfull Of Flaked Almonds

  1. Begin by placing your oven on to 180 degrees (160 fan) and grease and line a large deep sided baking tray roughly 25cm squared with baking paper.
  2. In a bowl, chuck in the the apples, squeeze over the lemon juice and sprinkle over the cinnamon and give everything a good mix together until the apples are coated in the cinnamon. Leave to one side.
  3. In a separate bowl, add the butter, sugar, flour, baking powder, eggs and almond extract and beat until a smooth, well combined batter has formed.
  4. Pour half of the batter into the baking tray and then layer the sliced apples over the top of the batter. Cover the apples with the remaining batter and level the top with a spatula. Sprinkle over the flaked almonds (try not to have them overlapping each other!) before placing in the oven to bake for 35-40 minutes until the cake is firm on top and is coming away from the sides of the tray. 
  5. Check the cake after 30 minutes and if the almonds are browning too fast, cover the cake with some foil for the the remainder of the bake. Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely before removing the cake from the baking tray.
Cut the tray bake into 20-25 equal sized squares and prepare to tuck in. Thanks to the addition of the flaked almonds and the extract the sponge to this tray bake has a delicious bakewell type feel too it. The flaked almonds on top will be all brown and add a bit of crunch to the top of the cake as well as a hint of toastiness that is just divine. Inside the sponge is that hidden layer of apple which should not be all soft melt in your mouth, leaving that delicious cinnamon flavor on your taste buds. It's the perfect afternoon treat and also counts as one of your five a day! OK, maybe not but this tray bake with it's surprise centre will definitely make you feel good!

Not ready for a fruity surprise in your bake? Try one of these tray bakes instead:

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