Russian Apple Cake Charlotka

I love apples and especially cooking and eating dished with apples. Whether it’s poultry, salads or desserts, if the dish has apples, most probably I will choose it from the menu. Granny Smith apples are great to cook and bake with because they are so full of flavor! 
Last week was my husband’s birthday, so the Chocolate Cake was a must :) This week I decided I want to bake something lighter and the Traditional Russian Apple Cake Sharlotka came to mind. There are some variations to this very popular cake. I love this version of Apple Sharlotka because it has dried fruits and nuts. Nuts for me are like cheese for the French people, I would eat nuts as an appetizer, snack, dessert and gladly add them to any main dish :) This Apple Cake with Raisins, Cranberries and Nuts is light, moist and very tasty. The dough is airy, the dried fruits and nuts give the texture and crunchiness, and the lemon and orange add just a hint of citrus flavor that goes wonderfully with apples. The only thing I don’t like about this cake is that it disappears too fast :)

Ingredients

4 medium Granny Smith apples
Lemon juice from ½ lemon
½ Large orange 
1/3 cup walnuts or pecans
1/3 cup raisins, washed and dried
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1 cup sugar
4 tbsp. oil 
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. Vanilla extract
1 cup flour (I used self-raised)
4 eggs 
Pinch of salt
Butter for greasing
Icing sugar (optional)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 325 F.
Grease 9" baking spring form with butter and sprinkle with a bit of flour. 
Spread nuts on a baking sheet and toast until lightly golden for about 10 min. Remove from the oven and place aside to cool.
Increase the oven temperature to 375 F.
Wash, peel and core the apples. Slice them thinly to about 2 mm slices. Transfer to a bowl. Squeeze the lemon over the apples and gently toss. The lemon not only add the nice citrusy flavor but also prevent the apples from browning.

Apples for Sharlotka
Zest the orange. (If you don’t have a zester, peel half the orange, trying to peel only orange part with the little white membrane as possible. Thinly cut the peel to small sticks to about 1/3” by 1/8”.
Chop nuts coarsely, it’s nice to feel the texture in a cake.
To make the dough, first, separate yolks from egg whites. Add a pinch of salt to egg whites and whisk on a high speed until the foam is created. Add ½ cup sugar and continue whisking for another 8 minutes, until the egg whites are stable and fluffy.
In a separate bowl, beat yolks with the rest of sugar (1/2 cup) for about 5 minutes or until white and most of the sugar is dissolved. 
Add oil, vanilla, and juice from ½ orange. Continue beating for another minute, until mixed.
Carefully transfer 1/3 of egg whites to the egg yolk mixture and fold in slowly with the spatula.

Make a dough fro Sharlotka
In a separate bowl mix together sifted flour and cinnamon. If you don’t have a sifter, mix well with the fork until there are no lumps. Add to the eggs mixture and mix to combine.
Add orange zest, cranberries, raisins, nuts, and apples to the dough. Mix well.

Sharlotka with Dried Fruits and Nuts
Gently fold in the rest of the egg whites. 
Transfer the dough to the baking form and bake in the oven for 40 minutes.

Bake the Apple Cake

Russian Apple Cake - Sharlotka
Sprinkle with icing sugar if you want and serve with a hot cup of coffee or tea.

Bon appetite! 

Russian Charlotka - Apple Cake with Dried Fruits and Nuts

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium Granny Smith apples
  • Lemon juice from lemon
  • Large orange
  • 1/3 cup walnuts or pecans
  • 1/3 cup raisins, washed and dried
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 tbsp. oil
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla extract
  • 1 cup self-raised flour
  • 4 eggs
  • Pinch of salt
  • Butter for greasing
  • Icing sugar (optional)
Desserts   Breakfast  


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