Szarlotka – Polish Apple Cake

Szarlotka - Polish Apple Cake

This recipe brings you the authentic taste of a traditional Polish dessert. It’s a great way to experience Polish culture and cuisine. The apple filling makes this cake moist, flavourful and full of natural sweetness. It’s a great way to enjoy the goodness of apples!

For the filling:

  • half a lemon
  • 6 large bramley or cooking apples
  • 4 tablespoons soft brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • for the pastry:
  • 450g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 200g unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus extra for greasing
  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 3 egg yolks, plus 1 whole egg, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon plain yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest (from the half lemon above)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

To serve:

  • powdered sugar, for dusting
  • 300ml single cream
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Method of preparation:

Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan) mark 4. Grease and line a 23cm round springform tin.

For the filling, squeeze the juice from half a lemon into a large bowl. Peel, core and thinly slice the apples, tossing them in the lemon juice as you go.

Stir in the brown sugar and cinnamon, then put to one side.

For the dough, sift the flour and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the butter and work in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

Stir in the caster sugar. Beat the egg yolks, whole egg, yoghurt, lemon zest and vanilla extract in a separate bowl, then stir into the flour mixture to make a soft dough.

Press two-thirds of the dough into the bottom of the prepared tin. Arrange the apple slices on top, then spread gently over the remaining dough (don’t worry if it doesn’t cover all the apples).

Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes, until golden and firm to the touch. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then remove and cool completely on a wire rack.

To serve, dust with icing sugar and serve with whipped cream sprinkled with cinnamon.

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