‘Most of us have fond memories of food from our childhood. Whether it was our mom’s homemade lasagna or a memorable chocolate birthday cake, food has a way of transporting us back to the past.’ Homaro Cantu, a recently deceased famous Chef in Chicago wrote. I couldn’t agree more. Food that we associate with our childhood has a magical way of helping us turn back the clock to a time for most of us with no real worries or responsibilities. A time of pure bliss.
As mentioned in a previous post I have gained much of my love of food from my family. I will happily admit that as the eldest grandchild and great grandchild on my maternal side, I was rather spoilt growing up. I grew up knowing that I was very much loved and cherished by my extended family. When I used to visit my Great Grandparents and my three Great Great Aunts in Bournemouth I would arrive to find all my favourite foods ready and waiting for me.
One such food was something we called ‘Apple Slice’ or as the late British Jewish cookery book author Evelyn Rose called it, Dutch Apple Cake. I used to get so excited to walk in the kitchen and see it waiting for me on the counter. The mixed smells of apple, cinnamon and butter was just salivating and gave me this warm fuzzy feeling, which I suppose, now looking back as an adult, I can understand that it gave me a true sense of happiness and security. One mouthful would make everything else better!
As I began to grow up I had to start watching what I ate. The Apple Slice had to stop being available on each of my visits as there was no way I could resist the temptation. A time of pure bliss had come to an end.
I’ve been reminiscing about my favourite childhood foods and the start of my food journey thanks to this blog. It has encouraged me to try some of my old favourite dishes and I decided to start with Apple Slice. It was a slightly humbling experience as I had only ever seen the end product, never saw it in its raw stages. I really enjoyed making the cake batter, slicing the apples very thinly, arranging them as how I used to remember them looking and finally brushing the sugar and cinnamon glaze on top. It seemed like an eternity for the cake to come out the oven, but it was so worth the wait. That first mouthful felt like I had gone back in time to being 8 years old when life was pure bliss.
6 OZ SELF RAISING FLOUR
½ LEVEL TEASPOON BAKING POWDER
3 0Z CASTOR SUGAR
1 QUARTER PINT OF MILK
1½ OZ MELTED BUTTER
1 LB BAKING APPLES
4 OZ GRANULATED SUGAR MIXED WITH
1 LEVEL TEASPOON CINNAMON
1 0Z MELTED BUTTER
Grease a baking tin 12 x 7 x 1 inch deep with unsalted butter. Put the flour, baking powder & sugar into a bowl. Put the egg, milk and 1½ oz melted butter and whisk well. Add to flour mixture and mix to a smooth batter. Pour into tin and smooth top level and brush with 1 oz melted butter.
Peel, core, quarter, and slice apples ¼ inch thick. Lay slices in even rows overlapping to cover cake. Sprinkle mixed sugar and cinnamon over top evenly. Bake 180o above centre of oven for 15 -25 minutes. Cut into squares or portions as required.
First Published on Arutz Sheva http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Blogs/Message.aspx/7327#.Vb1RZpt0xO8