Vanilla apple cake

Vanilla apple cake

This was the first recipe I ever blogged, which was a bit of a surprise, as this was supposed to be a dating blog. After two and a half years of dating hell, my disastrous mishaps had become my identity and – in some friendship circles -legendary. My shenanigans were often met with gasps, laughter and even horror, which to me, was preferable to pity. Since when did being thirty and single become such a terrible affliction? So I wrapped myself up in humour and performed my party pieces to crowds of hungry, happily married people, who couldn’t get enough of my hilarious existence.
But when it came to writing it all down, I wasn’t laughing. So I wrote a cake recipe instead; this cake recipe, in fact, and never looked back. This cake is sweet, delicious and handsome, just like my boyfriend Jamie who I met a month later – I got there in the end!

Vanilla apple cake
Serves 8 / Hands on time 25 mins / Total time 1 hr 30mins + cooling / V
You’ll need: 20cm cake tin, foil, electric hand whisk or standing mixer
350-400g Brambly apples, peeled, cored and sliced
½ lemon, juiced
250g unsalted butter + extra for greasing
250g caster sugar
3 large eggs
250g self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbs demerara sugar
1 tbs icing sugar for decoration


Method
1. Preheat an oven to 180°C/160°C fan/ 350°F/gas mark 4 and grease your cake tin with butter.
2. Peel, roughly slice and core the apples. Put them in a large bowl, squeeze over the juice of half a lemon and give the apples a good toss – this prevents the apples oxidising and turning brown. Put to one side.
3. In a large bowl or standing mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until using an electric whisk until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and beat the eggs in one at a time, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides. If the mixture starts to curdle, simply add a tbs of the self-raising flour and continue to whisk until combined.
4. Sift in the remaining self-raising flour along with the salt and baking powder. Use a wooden spoon to fold in the mixture before giving it another quick whisk until you have a thick, pale batter.
5. Finally fold in the apples and spoon into your prepared tin, using the back of a spoon to push the mixture evenly to the edges (it may seem like there isn’t enough batter to cover the apples but don’t worry, the apples sink to the bottom of the cake during baking). Smooth over the top with a wooden spoon and sprinkle over a tbs of Demerara sugar.
6. Bake in the oven for 45 mins. At this stage the cake will be very brown but don’t worry, it’s not burning. Remove the cake from the oven and swiftly cover the top loosely with foil. Continue to bake for a further 30 mins.
7. Remove from the oven and leave the cake to rest in the tin for 10 mins before turning out onto a cooling rack. Leave to cool fully before dusting with icing sugar and serving with clotted cream and a cup of tea.



Vanilla apple cake

If you’ve had a go at making any of my recipes, I’d love to hear from you. Follow me now @corrieheale and tag your recipe pictures using #corriesrabbitfood.


V – Vegetarian
 – This cake is suitable for home freezing once cooled. Wrap well in cling film and freeze fore up to 3 months. Defrost fully before serving.



Rhubarb breakfast muffins

Rhubarb Breakfast Muffins
Healthy Rhubarb & Apple Muffins

Rhubarb is in season but I always struggle to know what to do with it. Apart from crumble I get a bit stuck. You can’t eat it raw (well you can but it’s very tart) and it doesn’t really lend itself to anything savoury, unless you pickle it – which I don’t have time for. So what else can you do with it?
Well, as you can see, I decided to make muffins but these are no ordinary muffins, these are my attempt at a ‘healthy-ish’ breakfast muffin (basically I’m bored of granola and want to eat cake for breakfast).
This was a bit of a challenge though, in my experience low calorie muffins taste like sweetened dog shit, so how do I make mine taste good with only half the sugar and no butter? To be honest I don’t know. I made this recipe up with a load of things I thought might work and to my astonishment, they actually did.
I like to eat mine in a bowl with yogurt but they’re also good for scoffing on the go – depends how late for work you are.


Rhubarb breakfast muffins
Makes 12 / Hands on time 20 mins / Total time 40 mins + cooling /

You’ll need:
Muffin cases and a 12 cup muffin tin
150g caster sugar
175g rhubarb, diced
2 tbs rapeseed oil
1 egg
130g full-fat Greek yogurt
1 tsp vanilla extract
200g plain flour
50g chopped walnuts
20g pumpkin seeds
¼ tsp sea salt flakes
½ tsp ground ginger
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Topping
Handful of oats
Demerara sugar for sprinkling
Greek yogurt to serve (optional)


Muffin Rules
Rule 1. Don’t over mix. Over mixing will produce tough muffins. 

Rule 2. Be quick! As soon as you combine the wet and dry ingredients, the chemicals in the raising agents will start to rise. Get the muffins in the oven as soon as possible. 


Method
1. Preheat an oven to 190°C/170°C fan/375°F/gas mark 5. Line 12 muffin cases in a muffin tin. In a large mixing bowl, add the sugar and the chopped rhubarb and give it a good stir. Add the egg, oil, vanilla, salt, yogurt and combine well.
2. Stir in the walnuts along with the pumpkin seeds before adding the flour, ginger, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Mix quickly until just incorporated and spoon swiftly and evenly into the muffin cases – a heaped tablespoon each should suffice. Sprinkle each muffin with oats and Demerara sugar and bake in the oven for 15-18 mins.
3. Leave to cool on a cooling rack and serve with a dollop of yogurt or enjoy on the go. Store in an airtight container lined with kitchen roll and consume within 4 days. Suitable for home freezing.


If you’ve had a go at making any of my recipes, I’d love to hear from you. Follow me now @corrieheale and tag your recipe pictures using #corriesrabbitfood.


V– Vegetarian   – Suitable for home freezing once baked. Wrap individually in clingfilm and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost the night before and enjoy for breakfast the next morning.



Blackberry & apple crumble

Apple & Blackberry Crumble
Apple & Blackberry Crumble
Apple & Blackberry Crumble

Okay summer, you can bugger off now, I’m ready for warming soups, hot cups of Horlix and oodles of apple crumble with silky custard. The tights are firmly back on.
I haven’t actually made a crumble since I was at school, I normally buy one from Sainsbury’s and eat the whole thing for dinner with my mum whilst watching Embarrassing Fat Bodies. What? Is that bad?
Anyway, enough about what my mum and I like to do in our private time, lets move on to crumble. I made this beaut with apples from my friend’s mum’s garden (thanks Annie), it went down an absolute treat with Jamie’s mates. His friend Glen even said it was one of the nicest crumbles he’d ever had, so I suggest you listen to Jamie’s friend Glen and try it for yourself. It’s Autumn now people, we can stop sucking in and let it all hang out. Ready? On three. One… Two… Three… Aaahhhhhhhhhhhh… That’s better, so grab a spoon and join me and my mummy on the sofa with a bowl of hot, sticky, fruity goodness. Bliss.


Apple and blackberry crumble
Serves 6 / Hands on time 30 mins / Total time 1 hr 15 /

Filling

1 tsp lemon juice
100g Demerara sugar
900g cooking apples peeled, cored and chopped
150g blackberries
¼ tsp cinnamon
Topping
180g flour
50g oats
½ tsp cinnamon
30g hazelnuts, bashed or roughly chopped
50g demerara sugar
150g cold cubed butter
Pinch of sea salt flakes
Custard to serve (optional)


Method
1. Preheat your oven to 200°C/180°C fan/400F/gas mark 6. Peel, core and chop the apples into rough chunks. Pop them in a casserole dish (I use my lasagna one that’s around 8×6″). Sprinkle with cinnamon and give it a bit of a toss.
2. Evenly distribute the blackberries on top and cover with a layer of sugar. Give it another mix being careful so as not to squash the blackberries and put to one side.
3. If using whole hazelnuts, pour into a plastic bag and give them a bash with a rolling pin to break them up (be sure not to break them up too finely, you still want a bit of texture).
4. In a large mixing bowl, add the flour, sugar, cinnamon, oats, crushed hazelnuts and a good pinch of salt. Mix together and add the cold cubed butter. Using your hands, rub the butter into the mix until you have breadcrumbs.
5. Sprinkle the crumb evenly on top of the fruit before baking in an oven for 35-40 minutes (or until the top is golden brown and you can see the fruit bubbling up the sides). Serve with custard.

Apple & Blackberry Crumble
Apple & Blackberry Crumble

If you’ve had a go at making any of my recipes, I’d love to hear from you. Follow me now @corrieheale and tag your recipe pictures using #corriesrabbitfood.


V– Vegetarian     – Suitable for home freezing before baking. Wrap the dish well in a few layers of clingfilm. Top cook from frozen, add 5 minutes to cooking time. Consume within 3 months.


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Vanilla apple cake

Vanilla Apple Cake
Vanilla Apple Cake

Let me just start by saying that this cake is not the slimmers option, so if you have type two diabetes look away now. I don’t usually bake cakes but tomorrow is my dear old dads birthday. Sadly he is no longer around to eat cakes but when he was he seemed to like this one. Happy 62nd birthday Dad.


Vanilla apple cake
Serves 8 / Hands on time 25 mins / Total time 1hr 30mins + cooling / 
You’ll need: 20cm cake tin, foil, electric hand whisk or standing mixer
350-400g Brambly apples, peeled, cored and sliced
½ lemon, juiced
250g unsalted butter + extra for greasing
250g caster sugar
3 large eggs
250g self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbs demerara sugar
1 tbs icing sugar for decoration


Method
1. Preheat an oven to 180°C/160°C fan/ 350°F/gas mark 4 and grease your cake tin with butter.
2. Peel, roughly slice and core the apples. Put them in a large bowl, squeeze over the juice of half a lemon and give the apples a good toss – this prevents the apples oxidising and turning brown. Put to one side.
3. In a large bowl or standing mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until using an ecliptic whisk until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and beat the eggs in one at a time. If the mixture starts to curdle, simply add a tbs of the self-raising flour and continue to whisk until combined.
4. Sift in the remaining self-raising flour along with the salt and baking powder. Use a wooden spoon to fold in the mixture before giving it another quick whisk until you have a thick, pale batter.
5. Finally fold in the apples and spoon into your prepared tin, using the back of a spoon to push the mixture evenly to the edges (it may seem like there isn’t enough batter to cover the apples but don’t worry, the apples sink to the bottom of the cake during baking). Smooth over the top with a wooden spoon and sprinkle over a tbs of Demerara sugar.
6. Bake in the oven for 45 mins. At this stage the cake will be very brown but don’t worry, it’s not burning. Remove the cake from the oven and swiftly cover the top loosely with foil. Continue to bake for a further 30 mins.
7. Remove from the oven and leave the cake to rest in the tin for 10 mins before turning out onto a cooling rack. Leave to cool fully before dusting with icing sugar and serving with clotted cream and a cup of tea.



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If you’ve had a go at making any of my recipes, I’d love to hear from you. Follow me now @corrieheale and tag your recipe pictures using #corriesrabbitfood.


V – Vegetarian
 – This cake is suitable for home freezing once cooled. Wrap well in cling film and freeze fore up to 3 months. Defrost fully before serving.