Tuesday, July 23, 2013

little apricot cakes

My cousin Lynette bought me a box of apricots last week. Immediately, I thought I would bake with them. Are you surprised? :)

I found a recipe for these cute little apricot cakes online and I wanted to have a go at baking them.

Before any baking could begin, I had to deal with the apricots. Since mine were pretty ripe by the time I could squeeze out an hour to bake something, they were pretty soft so I all I had to do was to halve them, remove the pit and then cut each piece into smaller pieces.

In the bowl of a mixer, I creamed together the butter and sugar. Once the mixture had turned light and fluffy, I added the eggs, one at a time, and beat after each addition. I also added the zest of a lemon and vanilla extract.

The sifted flour, baking powder and salt were added to the mixture, along with the milk in the sequence flour-milk-flour-milk-flour.

The resulting batter was thick and creamy.

I filled the holes of the muffin tin until they were about half full. Then I placed the pieces of apricot on the batter and gently pushed down a little.

Some demerara sugar was scattered on top of each cake before the tray was placed in a pre-heated oven and the cakes were baked for 25 minutes.

The little cakes were not overly sweet, and the cake itself was tender. I would make these again, but with another fruit, perhaps raspberries or even rhubarb, because I think the slight tartness of these fruit would go really nicely with the cake.

Little Apricot Cakes (Makes 12)
Adapted from recipe by bon appetit

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
85g unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup whole milk
4 apricots, halved, pitted, cut into smaller wedges
2 tablespoons raw sugar
Nonstick vegetable oil spray

1. Preheat oven to 170C.
2. Coat muffin cups with nonstick spray.
3. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
4. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar in another medium bowl, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl, until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
5. Add egg, lemon zest, and vanilla and beat until combined.
6. With mixer on low speed, add dry ingredients in 3 additions alternately with milk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with dry ingredients.
7. Divide batter among muffin cups (cups will be only 1/2 full) and smooth tops.
8. Top with apricot slices and sprinkle with raw sugar.
9. Bake until cakes are golden and a tester inserted into the centers comes out clean, 20–25 minutes. 10. Transfer pan to a wire rack; let pan cool 5 minutes. Transfer cakes to rack and let cool completely.

NOTE: Cakes can be made 1 day ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

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