My very good friend and weekly dinner buddy, Stefan, celebrates his 24th birthday today. Happy day to you, sir! As part of the festivities, his wife Jola, who is currently at school in Toronto asked me to make him a birthday treat. When I asked her what his favourite treat was, she mentioned a Polish apple cake that both of their families make. Jola’s family recipe is so secret she doesn’t even have it, so we had to put our head’s together to find a recipe on the web. Now, there was a bit of confusion over whether it was szarlotka, placek z jablka or jablecznik (which I later realized were totally the same thing). Every English recipe I could find of the last two cakes was the same.
I had a few issues with covering the apples with the amount of batter I had. So, next time I might try a slightly smaller pan. I would also use a different apple. The mix I used was firmer apples but I found them to be too hard in the cake, I would have enjoyed a slightly softer apple. Overall though, it was quite a yummy treat - delicious and satisfying but not too heavy. Most important of all, Stefan loved it!
Polish Apple Cake (placek z jablka or jablecznik)
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 ½ tsp baking powder
¾ tsp salt
¾ cup sugar
½ cup soft butter (I did slightly more)
¾ cup milk
4 large apples peeled, sliced thinly
¼ cup sugar
3 tbsp cold butter
1/4 tsp cloves
1. Lightly coat a 13x9” pan with cooking spray and heat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In stand mixer combine flour, baking powder, salt and the ¾ cup sugar. Add 1/2 cup butter, milk and eggs. Beat at medium speed until smooth.
3. Place half the batter into prepared pan, then layer on the apples. Put remaining batter on top leaving a few holes for apples to poke through.
4. Cut the 1/4 cup sugar and cloves into the 3 tbsp of sugar and sprinkle on top.
5. Bake for about 40 minutes.