When Grandma was visiting a few weeks ago, she reminded me about her favorite cake recipe. She's been making it as long as I've been around. It originally was published in our home town newsletter and then reprinted as my contribution to Mrs. Ferraro's third grade class' Mother's Day cookbook circa 1979. Oh, the things I have to look forward to when the girls are in school, like receiving my own recipes in a kid-decorated leaflet as a gift.
We had just gone apple picking and had 25-ish pounds of fresh McIntosh, Cortlands, Empires, Galas and Honeycrisps sitting on the kitchen counter. Mom got right to work cutting the apples and removing the cores in preparation for grating them into the cake. We used Empires, McIntosh and Cortland but you can use your favorites. When I made the cake again a few weeks ago, I was lazy and didn't cut and core the apples first. It was actually easier to hang onto them when they are whole and you end up with a tidy little core at the end. Sorry about that, Mom!
I gathered the rest of the ingredients and started putting the dough together. As always, I used the recipe as written but substituted my favorite gluten-free flour.
It is delicious when still warm, and (according to my husband) even better when chilled. I left off the glaze because I didn't have any lemons and didn't miss it, though it is apparently my mother's favorite part. It's a crumb cake and the gluten-free version is excellent even after several days in the refrigerator.
Grasmere Apple Cake
4 c. flour (I substituted the Gluten-Free Pantry All Purpose Flour)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 c. sugar
3/4 lb. butter
2 eggs, beaten
6-9 apples, washed
3/4 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
Mix dry ingredients and cut in butter until mealy texture achieved. Add beaten eggs and blend with your fingertips. Divide dough in half, pat into bottom of a 9x13 inch pan (I lined mine with parchment paper). Grate apples over bottom layer. Spring with the sugar and spice mixture and pat remaining dough on top. Bake 325 degrees Farenheit for ~55 minutes, or until golden brown.
Cool, then glaze if desired with the following:
1 c. icing sugar
juice of 1/2 lemon