Diana's Desserts - www.dianasdesserts.com

Spiced Apple Cake with Guava Cream Cheese

Servings: 8
This fragrant spice cake, laden with fresh apples, goes together quickly. If you can't find guava jam in your area, feel free to substitute plum, cherry or any other preserves you have on hand. The cake is also terrific at brunch, where it pairs well with a cup of great coffee.

For Cake:
2 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
4 cups peeled, cored and finely chopped Granny Smith or other tart green apples (about 4 apples)
1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped

For Guava Cream Cheese:
1/4 cup guava jam
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
2/3 cup cream cheese, at room temperature

Preheat an oven to 325 degrees F. Butter and flour a 10-inch round cake pan.

For Cake:
In a bowl and using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat the eggs until frothy, 3-4 minutes. Add the vegetable oil and orange juice and mix thoroughly. In a separate bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and beat on low speed until thoroughly combined. Fold in the apples and walnuts.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven until firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour; cover the top with aluminum foil if it begins to overbrown. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan on a rack for 5 minutes, then invert onto the rack. Let cool completely.

For Guava Cream Cheese:
In a bowl, combine the jam, lime juice and cream cheese. Using a fork, mash and stir briskly until light and fluffy.

To Serve:
Place the cake on a serving plate. Using an icing spatula or knife, spread the guava cream cheese evenly over the top.

Makes 1 (10-inch) cake, 8 servings.

Source: Cantina: The Best of Casual Mexican Cooking by Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken.

Date: September 2, 2006