Sugar High Friday: Apple Bundt Cake with Caramel Topping
My husband's birthday was last week, so of course I wanted to make him a special treat. While I would normally choose chocolate for such occasions, I also knew the kind ladies at his job were surprising him with a chocolate cake from a talented local baker. So I started thinking about fruit desserts, and settled on apples because, well, he likes them and there are so many recipes to choose from! There isn't any better combination than apples and caramel, as far as I'm concerned, so I knew this would become my Sugar High Friday entry as well.
I wasn't nervous about baking the cake, and I must say it turned out well. I used this recipe from Epicurious, except I added a pinch of nutmeg and substituted 1/2 cup of applesauce for part of the oil. The diced apples looked very pretty in the sliced cake.
You'll notice that that recipe includes a caramel topping. I didn't want to make that one because of all the butter. Mostly I wanted the challenge of working with sugar -- I say challenge because the last time I made a candy recipe it turned into a grainy disaster despite my careful attempts not to disturb the boiling contents. I was a bit worried, but there was no reason to be because this recipe for caramel sauce worked on my very first try! It's just a simple caramel sauce that dressed up the cake nicely, calling to mind the caramel apples I usually enjoy in the fall. The sauce was also great the next day over a bowl of ice cream.
Overall, this birthday dessert was a great success. There were so many textures, from the creamy ice cream to the soft cake to the caramel, which was soft on the cake and a bit chewy on the ice cream. I'm sure it will return to my table on many other special occasions.