This is an amalgamation of two recipes and two ideas... I was asked, by my mother, to make a dessert for a dinner we were having that would use up some apples we had lingering in the fridge. There were only three - so not enough for baked apples... and I didn't feel like making Apple Pie en miniature either... So apple cake? Yeah - I like apple cake. I love the streusel topping! But... I want something more - I want to make it interesting! I know- what about cheesecake/frosting on the inside?!
I combined and played with two recipes to make this one, inside-out cake the first was Catherine Bell's 'Apple Spiced Streusel Coffee Cake' and the second came from a cookbook written by a family friend the recipe was called 'Chocolate Surprise Muffins'. The muffins have a surprise, cheesecakey centre that I recreated for this cake. Which is not, by the way, a diet food. By any stretch of the imagination!
The result was a tasty cake with a delicious, crunchy topping and a surprising, creamy centre - well worth recreating! Though I do say so myself...
Set oven to 180 degrees C and grease/line a large cake tin.
1/4 cup, brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup flour
60g cold, unsalted butter - cut into pieces or grated
1 cup walnuts, chopped
Using a food processor - pulse all ingredients (sans walnuts) until they resemble "large breadcrumbs" - then mixed in the chopped nuts and set aside for now.
200g cream cheese, at room temperature
2 Tbsp sugar
juice and zest of half a lemon
In a bowl, beat together the cream cheese, sugar and lemony bits until smooth. Set aside until later.
2 1/4 cups wholemeal flour
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp baking bowder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt --- sift the above together!
110g unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
3 apples - one grated and two cored and chopped
1 1/2 cup buttermilk mixed with 2 tsp vanilla extract
In a bowl, separate from the one in which the dry ingredients are sifted, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add the brown sugar and continue to beat until the sugar has mostly dissolved into the butter. Beat in the eggs, one at a time (you can add a tsp of flour mix here - to stop curdling... not that's there's anything wrong with the mixture curdling at this point, it just doesn't look very nice). Stir in the apples.
Now, alternating flour - buttermilk - flour - buttermilk - flour fold in the remaining ingredients, careful not to overmix.
Put a little over a half of the cake batter into the prepared cake tin. Spread, as best you can, the cream cheese mix over the batter, leaving about an inch (ish) free at the edge. Pour over the rest of the cake batter and sprinkle the struesel mix over the top.
Bake for 1 - 1 1/2 hours - the gated apple and cream cheese centre mean this will never be a dry cake and it will be hard to tell exactly when it's baked. Just keep an eye on it and watch out for the edges pulling away from the side.
Enjoy warm, or at room temperature with the usual cake fixin's.