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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Apple Cheddar Cheese Cake

Yummy.
This may seem like an odd combination - apples and cheese?  But I saw a show on the Food Network - "Throw Down with Bobby Flay" - where he challenges cooks famous for one dish to a throw down to see if he can cook their dish better than they can.  (It's a good show).  Anyway, this episode was a throw down for apple pies, and the secret for the best apple pie was that the cook put cheddar cheese in the apple pie crust.  The mix of the salty with the sweet is what made their pie win.  So, when I saw this recipe, I thought I would give it a whirl and see what all the fuss was about.  Turns out - it's totally worth the fuss.  This cake is moist, with a wonderful crumb.  It is sweet because of the cornmeal, but not too sweet because of the cheese and the tart apple.  In fact, my family (who I made the cake for) was even saying that this could be served as a side dish of cornbread with chili or something.  I loved this cake as a light dessert after a big meal.  I think this would also be a great cake to have for brunch.  And...it's fairly healthy!  Whole wheat flour, cornmeal, and apples make for a cake that is not full of unnecessary sugar or fat.

Anyway, now that I have tried cheddar cheese with apple, next time I make an apple pie I am going to include cheese in my crust.  I hope you guys feel adventurous enough to try this delicious combo!

Ingredients:

Ingredients.
1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
6 tablespoons nonfat milk
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
2 large Granny Smith apples, cored, peeled, and cut into 1/4-inch pieces

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9-inch baking round with non-stick cooking spray.  Peel and chop the apples.  If they start to brown while you make the cake batter, put the apple pieces into a bowl of cold water with a squirt of lemon juice in it.  

Prepared Apple.
2.  Combine the dry ingredients - the flours, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt - in a medium bowl.  

Dry Ingredients.
3.  Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy.

Butter and Sugar.
4.  Add the eggs to the creamed butter and sugar and blend to combine.

Eggs into Creamed Butter and Sugar.
5.  Add half of the dry ingredients to the blended eggs, butter, and sugar.  Blend.

Half Dry.
Blend.
6.  Add the milk and blend.

Milk.
7.  Add the remainder of the dry ingredients and blend to combine.

Rest of Dry Ingredients. 
The Batter.
8.  Add the cheddar cheese and apples into the batter and stir until everything is fully mixed.

Cheese and Apple.
Blended.
Ready to Bake.
9.  Put into the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.  Makes 1 cake that serves 8-10 people.  Enjoy!!!

Finished Product.
Close-Up.
Recipe adapted from Cake Keeper Cakes by Lauren Chattman.

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