Photo: Courtesy of Our Best Bites.
This Apple Spice Snack Cake With Brown Butter Frosting from Our Best Bites brings back all of our favorite childhood memories: slabs of moist cake, not-too-thick frosting, and a giant glass of milk. Ready to relive those days?
For the cake:
2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled with a knife
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 sticks plus 2 tbsp butter, divided and softened
3/4 cup plus 2 tbsp dark brown sugar, divided
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 cups peeled, chopped tart apples (like Granny Smith; about 1 large apple or 2 small apples)
1 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice, divided
For the frosting:
1/2 cup salted butter
4 cups powdered sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
Heavy cream (to reach desired consistency)
Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x13 baking pan and set aside.
In a small skillet, melt two tablespoons of the butter over medium-high heat until the butter starts to bubble. Add the apples, two tablespoons of brown sugar, and one-half teaspoon pumpkin pie spice; sauté until the apples start to soften and the brown sugar/butter mixture becomes thick and syrupy, about three to five minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, three-fourths teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, and salt together in a medium bowl. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on medium-high speed for about three minutes, or until light and fluffy, scraping the bowl as necessary. Add eggs one at a time, beating until just combined after each addition. Reduce speed to medium, and add one-third of the flour mixture, mixing until incorporated. Mix together the buttermilk and vanilla, and then add one-half cup buttermilk to the flour/butter/sugar mixture. Repeat with another addition of flour, the rest of the milk, and ending with the final addition of flour. Add the apple mixture to the cake batter and fold gently. Spread the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake for 35 to 50 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. While the cake is cooling, place one stick of salted butter into a small saucepan and heat over medium, stirring frequently, until it starts to bubble. When it begins to bubble, reduce the heat to low. Don’t go anywhere — things can go south quickly. Once the butter becomes very frothy, you’ll start to notice a caramel-like smell — that means the butter is browning. When the butter is brown (and before it burns), remove it from heat.
In a large mixing bowl, combine one-fourth cup heavy cream, one tablespoon vanilla extract, the powdered sugar, and the melted butter; mix on high speed with a stand or electric mixer. Add additional heavy cream in order to reach the desired consistency. When the cake is completely cool, spread the frosting over the cake and cut into squares.
For more great desserts from Our Best Bites, try the Coconut Lime Cupcakes or Old-Fashioned Chocolate Layer Cake.