Dutch apple mini cakes with boiled cider syrup

by Stephanie Weaver on December 10, 2012

Dutch Apple Cakes with Boiled Cider SyrupTiny little apples decorate these individual cakes which are perfect for holiday bake sales or party buffets. The batter is quick to whip up and the apples are sliced partway through and fanned out before being squooshed into the dough. A light glaze of maple syrup and spices is spooned over the tops before baking. Finally, boiled cider is drizzled on right before serving for an intense hit of caramel apple goodness.

This dessert is one of my German heritage recipes. My mom used to make it pressed into a pan and covered with apple slices. I’m not sure if it’s really “Dutch” or if that was some kind of Queens New York slang for German, or even how old the recipe is. But I only have two family recipes and this is one of them. Our German anise cookies are also a Christmas favorite.

I used tiny flavorful crimson gold apples which you might find in stores now. The recipe is free of refined sugar, low in sugar overall, and has a lovely autumn feeling to it. I made boiled cider the other day after reading about it here. Insanely good and so simple. The flavor is like intense caramel apples, so amazing that I am going to make more for holiday gifts. You’ll need square or round silicone muffin cups if you want to make these exactly the way I did.Dutch Apple Cakes with boiled cider glazeDutch apple mini cakes with boiled cider syrup
Makes 12

6 miniature apples—like crimson gold—or 3 small apples

1 T. (15 ml) maple syrup
1/2 t. (1 g) cinnamon
1/4 t. (0.5 g) ground cloves
1/4 t. (0.5 g) ground nutmeg

1/2 C. (70 g) Bob’s Red Mill all-purpose Baking Mix or all-purpose gluten-free flour blend
1/4 C. (34 g) sweet sorghum flour
2 T. (30 g) cold heart-healthy margarine or extra-virgin coconut oil
1 T. (15 ml) agave syrup
1 t. (2 g) baking powder
1 t. (2 g) psyllium husk powder
1/4 t. (0.5 g) sea salt, omit for low-sodium diets
1/2 t. (1 g) cinnamon
1/4 t. (0.5 g) ground cloves
1/4 t. (0.5 g) ground nutmeg
1/2 C. (125 ml) nonfat Greek yogurt or soy creamer

boiled cider, recipe follows

Wash and dry the apples.

Preheat the oven to 350F/180C/gas mark 4.

In a small bowl, combine the maple syrup and cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Mix well and set aside. This will be your glaze.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the S-blade attachment, add the other ingredients (flour through nutmeg) except for the yogurt or creamer. Pulse on a low setting until the mixture looks like crumbly small peas. With the machine running, add the yogurt or creamer. You’ll have to scrape the sides down and then finish mixing it evenly with a spatula after removing the S-blade.

Set out 12 silicone muffin cups on a baking sheet, or fill a standard muffin pan with 12 paper liners (spray the liners with cooking spray). Put one slightly rounded tablespoonful of batter into each cup. If you have a little left over, divide it evenly among the 12 cups.

Slice each apple in half lengthwise, carefully remove the stem and base with a paring knife, and use a grapefruit spoon to remove the core and seeds. A grapefruit spoon works better than a paring knife for this, as it’s too easy to cut big chunks out of the tiny apples with a knife.

Slice each half in thin slices almost to the end, so you leave one end uncut. Carefully fan out the slices as best you can, then smoosh the apple, cut side down, onto the dough so it fills in the bottom of the muffin cup completely. If you are not using miniature apples, just cut thin slices and arrange a few, cut side down, on top of each cake, pressing them into the dough.

Drizzle about 1 t. (5 ml) of glaze over the top of each cake.

Bake for 14-15 minutes until the cake is golden brown and springs back firmly when pressed with a finger. Let cool on a wire rack. Once they are cool, you can carefully loosen the silicone form and pop out each cake.

Just before serving, drizzle with a small amount of boiled cider.

How to make boiled cider
Makes about 16 oz (500 ml)

1 gallon (3.78 L) organic apple cider or unfiltered apple juice

Pour the juice or cider into a large, non-reactive deep pot (not iron or aluminum, something with a ceramic liner works great).

Bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Once it begins to boil, turn down the heat just enough to keep the cider at a full boil. Do not cover.

Check every hour. It took me about six hours to boil the cider down. You want to watch it pretty carefully in the last hour. It should reduce to one-seventh of its original volume. You’re looking for it to get really foamy and boily at the end.

How to test if it’s finished: Dip a spoon in it (blow on it a little so you don’t burn yourself), then drag your finger across the back of the spoon. You should be able to see the trail your finger left. It won’t be thick like syrup until it cools down completely. If it’s too thick when it cools you can thin it later with filtered water. I thinned it a little too much for the photo, but it still tasted delicious.

Pour into a clean, sterile jar or bottle and store indefinitely in the refrigerator.

More recipes using boiled cider:
Rustic chunky applesauce from Shockingly Delicious
Apple cider soda (and detailed boiled cider instructions) from Foodie with Family

Required FTC disclosure: The crimson gold apples were sent to me by Melissa’s Produce. I was not paid to write this post.

All of our recipes are gluten-free, sugar-free, and made with plant-based ingredients to help you build a healthy life. We support Meatless Monday. Look for midweek essays and Friday giveaways (when available).

Here are the silicone muffin cups I used:

Print Friendly

Previous post:

Next post: