Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Strawberry and apple cake (with coconut sugar)

After a few disappointing forays into berries and stone fruit over winter, I am delighted to be enjoying fresh, sweet strawberries and apricots this week. They are both delicious plain but with rather a lot of strawberries at my disposal (I was a little excited at the point of purchase) I decided to turn some into a cake.

I also had a few past-their-best apples hanging around, so one of them went into the mix too. The result was this simple but effective strawberry and apple cake, which I chose to sweeten lightly with coconut sugar. It is great plain for afternoon tea and we have also been enjoying it for dessert with soy custard (me) and soy ice cream (Mr Bite).

I don't bake with strawberries very often as I enjoy them so much fresh. I was pleased to discover that they are equally enjoyable in baking, as they hold their flavour and even their shape. I always like apple in cakes but the strawberries were very much the star here, and their natural sweetness stood out nicely against the mellow tones of coconut sugar.

If you don't have fresh strawberries available, you could substitute thawed frozen raspberries, cherries or blueberries instead. The cake will obviously be different but I suspect just as enjoyable in its own way.

A note on measurements before moving into the recipe: I have tried to adopt the British custom of listing weights as well as cup measurements, but the batteries in my kitchen scales died as I was starting to make this, and so I have cup measures only for this recipe! I use metric cups (one cup = 250ml) but if you have American cup measures (one cup = 240ml) you are unlikely to notice much difference in the end result. My tablespoon and teaspoon measures are the international standards of 15ml and 5ml respectively. 

Strawberry and apple cake
Perfect for summer or when you need a dose of summer, this simple cake is naturally sweetened and is delicious plain or with custard or ice cream
Makes 1 square cake to serve 12

6 tablespoons non-dairy spread
3/4 metric cup coconut sugar
Egg replacer to the equivalent of 1 egg OR 1 tbsp chia seeds soaked in 1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 metric cup almond milk (or other milk; mine was unsweetened)
1-1/2 metric cups plain flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch salt
1 medium apple, peeled and chopped
1 metric cup de-hulled strawberries, chopped in half

Preheat your oven to 175'C (350'F) and line a square cake pan with baking paper.

In a medium bowl, beat the non-dairy spread and coconut sugar on medium power until fluffy. Add the egg substitute and vanilla and beat to incorporate.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add approximately one-third of the flour to the creamed sugar and beat to incorporate; subsequently, add approximately one-third of the milk to the creamed sugar and beat to incorporate. Continue gradually adding the flour and milk in turn until incorporated. The batter will be quite thick.

Stir through the apple and half of the strawberries.

Transfer the batter to your prepared dish and top with the remaining strawberries.
Bake for 40 minutes, monitoring carefully from about 35 minutes, until golden and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Serve plain or with (non-dairy) custard or ice cream.

Have you been baking anything this week?


  1. Enjoyed this weekend with a special dish over here.. Thanks for sharing this -
    Regards Sneha

  2. I can definitely relate to the over enthusiasm when it comes to buying fruit & veg! Fortunately, I can usually find a use for it though ;) This cake sounds lovely and looks especially good with custard.

    1. It's not a bad thing to be enthusiastic for, if we're going to be over-enthusiastic about something :-)

  3. We are alike in that - we love our strawberries fresh, too! But your cake looks intriguingly delicious!

    Julie & Alesah
    Gourmet Getaways xx

  4. I still haven't tried baking with coconut sugar, but I do have a bag in my cupboard waiting to be used.

  5. This looks delicious. I love strawberries in baking.
    When we have excess strawberries I usually freeze them to make some sort of ice-cream but I'll have to give this a try next time I get a heap :-)

    1. I will definitely be baking with strawberries again!

  6. You don't see strawberries and apples together very often, but I they sound like a great pairing for this cake!

    1. I think they are secretly best friends :-)

  7. How lovely to have all those strawberries in season. I do think England has the best strawberries. I love strawberry cake and agree that strawberries do hold their shape well. When I have too many strawberries I freeze them for smoothies but I see I should make a cake instead! xx

    1. Or do both! Strawberry smoothie alongside strawberry cake :-)

  8. I don't bake with strawberries much but when I do I am pleasantly surprised - am v jealous of you with british berries - they are the best

    1. They really are - I consider myself lucky every time I bite into one!

  9. can't wait for the weekend. This looks so yummy, thanks for the ingredient <3

  10. I so love reading baking articles. Thank you for this one. Spare time to read mine.


I genuinely appreciate all comments and the time taken to post them. Occasionally, I may need to restrict commenting to registered users in order to halt large volumes of spam. If that happens, I will lift the restriction within a week.

Want other ways to interact? Bite-sized thoughts is on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/bitesizedthoughts) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/bitesizethought).