The combination of toffee and apples is a reliable winner. I find this cake creates a bridge between my friends who enjoy chocolate and caramel desserts, the ones who like pudding and those who like fruit.
There’s something about the caramel yet fruity notes of the apple, along with the pleasing cake texture underneath, that no one yet has argued with. I love to serve this cake slightly warm with a generous amount of cold cream poured all over, to the point where it sinks through the crumb of the cake.
Toffee apple upside-down cake
Prep 30 min
Cook 1 hr
For the cake
250g unsalted butter, softened
250g golden caster sugar
Grated zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp vanilla extract
600g bramley apples, unpeeled but cored, 3 x 1cm slices cut off 1 apple, all the rest chopped into 2cm dice
250g self-raising flour
Pinch of salt
For the toffee sauce
5g salted butter
20g dark brown sugar
40ml double cream
Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/350F/gas 4 and grease and line the bottom and sides of a 20cm cake tin with greaseproof paper.
Make the toffee sauce by mixing all of the ingredients in a saucepan and bringing to a gentle simmer. Stir well, take off the heat, then leave to cool.
Put the butter and sugar in a bowl and beat until pale and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, followed by the lemon zest and vanilla extract. Fold in the diced apples, followed by the flour and salt, and mix well.
Pour the cooled toffee sauce into the bottom of the cake tin, lay the three apple slices on top (depending on their size, you may need to halve them), then pour the batter over the apple slices.
Bake for one hour, or until a metal skewer inserted comes out clean. Place a plate over the tin and flip, taking care not to burn yourself on the hot toffee sauce. Lift off the tin, leave the cake to cool, and serve warm with cold cream.