This Applesauce Cake is one of those recipes that you can make in a hurry with stuff that's presumably sitting in your pantry. But the end result is so delicious, you can even serve it to company-- as I have in the past, and trust me, it was gone in minutes.
I always have applesauce sitting in my pantry because it makes a great substitute for fat in baking-- I usually substitute it for part of the fat, and not all, because it does tend to make the texture of baked goods really tender. And while some tenderness is good, too much can make the cake or cookie fall apart.
Anyway, I am always in a hurry to use up the applesauce once I've opened a bottle because otherwise it tends to go bad pretty fast. I don't love to eat it by itself since I am no longer two years old nor toothless (yet), but when I bake it into this easy cake, it is quite a treat.
I usually make this cake with whole-wheat pastry flour but this time I was out, so I made it with all-purpose instead. There's almost no difference in the taste, although I do prefer the whole-wheat pastry flour version for obvious health reasons. I also use unsweetened applesauce, and flavor the cake with tons of spices.
So here's the recipe. If you adore quick and easy fruit-based cakes, you might want to also look at my banana cake (one of my favorites!) and my orange cake.
1 1/2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour or all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp of ground spices-- I used a combination of green cardamom seeds, cinnamon, all-spice and cloves. You can also add nutmeg, and vary the combination of spices per your taste.
Sift the flour, baking soda and salt into a bowl and add the spices. Whisk to mix together.
In a separate bowl, place:
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola or other flavorless vegetable oil
Beat for a minute with a hand-mixer or in a stand mixer or with a whisk to combine.
In a small bowl combine:
1 1/2 tsp egg replacer + 2 tbsp warm water.
Add the egg replacer mix to the oil-sugar mixture in the bowl and mix.
Add 1 cup applesauce to the bowl and whisk in until combined.
Now add the flour slowly, and combine well. If you are using a motorized mixer, do not overbeat because you don't want the cake to toughen. However, your batter should be smooth, and not lumpy like pancake batter.
1 cup walnuts, lightly toasted (for 2 minutes in a microwave) and chopped
Mix together and pour the batter into a greased and floured standard loaf pan.
Bake 50-55 minutes in a 350-degree preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool on a rack for about 15 minutes, then run a knife around the edges, unmold, and continue to cool on a rack. Dust with powdered sugar, if desired.
The cake, once baked, has a wonderfully rich brown color that sometimes makes some guests wonder whether it has chocolate in it.
I am sending on this applesauce cake to Mansi who's hosting Sugar High Fridays this month, with the theme of Fruit and Nut. Thanks, Mansi!