Spice Girl’s Apple Cake/Pudding
Over the few years we have been open Mother Murphy’s Tearoom has developed into a community hub; a place for people to come along, meet new friends and enjoy the peace, tranquillity (and often madness) of our traditional tearoom.
Catering for people with different dietary requirements, including those with coeliac disease and dairy intolerance, we are always seeing new customers come along who are looking to see if it is really true that most of our lovely cakes and bakes are gluten and dairy free.
One particular Saturday we were getting ourselves geared up for one of our first Craft Chat and Cake Sessions doing some encaustic art painting. You have never heard of this I hear you say. Well until the fabulous Norma came along and demonstrated this to us, neither had I. Encaustic art is basically painting with bees wax using an iron. Believe me, it is one of the best crafts I have ever tried. We even had Mr M giving it a go too!
Kiddies in a candy shop
Anyway, that Saturday lunchtime into the tearoom walked Sharon and Frances with their gorgeous little blonde haired baby Sofia. They had heard good reviews from colleagues about our baking and wanted to check us out. They were looking for somewhere that provided gluten free food that was safe for somebody with coeliac disease, a dairy intolerance and where there would be a warm welcome to a family of 3. Talk about kiddies in a candy shop! I think they wanted to take home one of each of the cakes they saw that day. Later that afternoon just as the craft session was coming to a close, Frances ran in again asking for takeaway soups because they had enjoyed their lunch time visit so much. Let’s just say that it was quite some considerable time later that Frances, Sharon and Sofia left the tearoom once again, armed with Frances’ encaustic art painting, some soup and some cakes. “I only came in for a takeaway soup”, laughed Frances.
The Teashop on the Corner by Millie Johnson
At one of their next visits, without knowing it, they made all the hard work of setting up the tearoom worth every penny when they told me that Mother Murphy’s Tearoom reminded them of a book by Millie Johnson, The Teashop on the Corner. They said this book had some sort of magic about it and that they felt that same magic when they came into our little tearoom. I was nearly in tears I can tell you! Wanting to understand fully what they meant, I went out and bought the book for myself. I can tell you that I was bursting with pride as I read it thinking that people should associate our tearoom with this novel.
After reading this book, I started to refer to our tearoom in my face book posts as The Tearoom on the Hill and this quickly became our nickname. So much so, we now even receive post addressed to the Mother Murphy’s, The Tearoom on the Hill.
The Apple Cake
As autumn drew to a close in 2017, Sharon popped in one day with a sack full of wonderful apples from their garden. Scouring recipe books for some sort of apple delight, I came across a Dorset Apple Tray Bake. I pondered this and thought about how to adapt it to make it both gluten and dairy free and also to make into a large round cake rather than a tray bake. With the addition of some warm spices and few tweaks to the ingredients, our Apple Cake was born.
In December 2017 we had a Christmas Quiz in the tearoom and the deciding question was, “We like to name our cakes after our customers. Which cake should we name after you and why?” Sharon and Frances obviously did some major cheating along the way and were the only people to get every single question correct. It did mean that the deciding question was not needed, but their answer to this did warrant the apple cake being named after them.
So, I would like to introduce to you our Spice Girls’ Apple Cake....
SPICE GIRLS’ APPLE CAKE (gf/df)
Makes a 9” round cake
Warm spices turn this simple apple cake into a wonderful treat. I am not really sure whether this is a cake or a pudding. Cake or pudding, serve it warm and the spices are enhanced. Add a good helping of hot custard and this simple treat is transformed into a delicious pudding.
1 Preheat oven to 180oc/160oc fan oven.
2 Grease and line a 9” round deep cake tin with parchment paper. (I use a parchment paper liner).
3 Peel, core and thinly slice the apples, squeeze the lemon juice over them and put to one side.
4 Put all the other ingredients in the free standing mixer (or use a hand mixer) and beat together until light and smooth.
5 Spread half of the cake mixture over the bottom of the prepared cake tin.
6 Arrange half of the apples over the top of this then repeat these two layers with the remaining cake mixture and apples.
7 Sprinkle demerara sugar over the top.
8 Bake in the pre-heated oven for 50-60 minutes or until golden and springy to touch.
9 Leave in the tin until almost cold then cool completely on a wire rack.
Of course, the song for this post, just has to be,
Wannabe by the Spice Girls.